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Translation:Adoption Act, BE 2522 (1979)

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ADOPTION ACT
BE 2522 (1979)
_______________

BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ, REX.

Given on the 22nd Day of April, BE 2522 (1979);
Being the 34th Year of the Present Reign.




His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej is graciously pleased to proclaim that:


Whereas it is expedient to have a law on adoption.


Be it, therefore, enacted by the King, by and with the advice and consent of the National Legislative Assembly in the capacity of the National Assembly, as follows:

Contents[edit]





Sections


Name of the Act
1. This Act shall be cited as the “Adoption Act, BE 2522 (1979)”.


(Contents)


Date of coming into force
2. This Act shall come into force upon elapse of sixty days as from the day following the date of its publication in the Government Gazette.[1]


(Contents)


Abrogation of inconsistent laws
3. Any laws, bylaws and ordinance dealing herewith or contrary hereto or inconsistent herewith shall all be prevailed hereby.


(Contents)


Terminology
4. In this Act:


“Child” means a minor under the Civil and Commercial Code.


“Children welfare organisation” means a foundation, association or organisation established under the law with the purposes to assist children and carry out activities as to adoption.


“Court” means a Children and Juvenile Court under the law on establishment of children and juvenile courts or a provincial court in the area where there is no Children and Juvenile Court.


“Competent authority” means a person appointed by the Minister to execute this Act.


“Director-General” means the Director-General of the Department of Social Development and Welfare*.


“Board” means the Adoption Board.


“Minister” means the Minister in charge of this Act.


(Contents)


Rules, procedures and conditions for adoption and its registration
5. In order to protect a child to be adopted, the application for adoption and the registration thereof shall be made in accordance with the rules, procedures and conditions prescribed herein.


(Contents)


Purveyance of adoption
6. Directly or indirectly, no person, other than the Department of Social Development and Welfare*, a public agency entrusted by the same or a children welfare organisation having a license issued by the Director-General, may purvey an adoption.


(Contents)


Purveyance of adoption
7. A children welfare organisation which desires to purvey an adoption shall apply to the Director-General for his license.


The rules, procedures and conditions as to the application for the license, the issuance and the form of the same shall be as determined in the Ministerial Regulations.


(Contents)


Purveyance of adoption
8. In the case the application for the license under section 7 is refused by the Director-General, he shall submit his order of refusal together with the grounds thereof to that children welfare organisation without delay. The children welfare organisation shall have the right to appeal the said order to the Minister within thirty days as of the date of receipt of the order. The ruling of the Minister shall be final.


In the case the children welfare organisation having received the license under section 7 contravenes any condition determined in the license or acts in a manner detrimental to the public order or good morals of the people or to the children welfare, the license may be revoked by the Director-General and the provisions under paragraph one shall apply mutatis mutandis.


(Contents)


Adoption Board
9. There shall be a board entitled the “Adoption Board” consisting of: the Director-General as chairperson; a representative from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a representative from Bangkok Metropolis, a representative from the Department of Interior, a representative from the Department of Police, a representative from the Department of Attorney-General and no more than eight qualified persons appointed by the Minister, of which no less than a half is required to be female, as members; and the Director of the Adoption Centre as member and secretary.


(Contents)


Term of office of a qualified member
10. A qualified member shall have a term of office for two years.


In the case a new qualified member is appointed pending the term of another member, irrespective of being additional appointment or appointment to fill vacancy, the newly appointed shall be in office for the remaining term of the previously appointed.


A qualified member having vacated office can once again be appointed to the office.


(Contents)


Vacating from office of a qualified member
11. Additional to the retirement by rotation under section 10, a qualified member shall vacate office upon:


(1) Death.


(2) Resignation.


(3) Bankruptcy.


(4) Being an incompetent or quasi-incompetent person.


(5) Being sentenced to a term of imprisonment by a final judgement, other than the offence committed through negligence or summary offence.


(Contents)


Meeting of the Board
12. At any meeting of the Board, the presence of no less than a half of the total members of the board is required to constitute a quorum. Should the chairperson be absent for any meeting, the present members shall elect one amongst themselves to chair such meeting.


A decision of the meeting shall be made by a majority of votes. One member shall have one vote. In case of a tie, the chairperson of such meeting shall additionally issue one vote as a casting vote.


(Contents)


Subcommittees
13. The Board may appoint one or more subcommittees to carry out any act as may be entrusted.


Section 12 shall apply mutatis mutandis to the meeting of the subcommittees.


(Contents)


Authorities of the Board
14. The Board shall have the following authorities:


(1) To lay the regulations, ordinances and procedures as to adoption to be executed by the Adoption Centre, the licensed children welfare organisations and other pertinent agencies.


(2) To consider and decide as to adoption.


(3) To consider and resolve any problems as to adoption.


(4) To render advices as to adoption to the Adoption Centre, the licensed children welfare organisations and other pertinent agencies.


(Contents)


Adoption Centre
15. An Adoption Centre shall be established in the Department of Social Development and Welfare* to act as a secretariat of the Board.


(Contents)


Powers to execute this Act
16. In order to execute this Act, the Director-General, the Changwat Govenor or the competent authority shall be empowered as follows:


(1) To access, levant et couchant, to the dwelling of the parents, guardian, adoption applicant, the asylum, nursery, dwelling of a child or to the office of a children welfare organisation in order to have a meeting, to give questions, to investigate the facts, to gather any documents and evidences as to the livelihood and care of that child or to inspect the activities of that children welfare organization, as well as be empowered to search the said places in order to find or bring the child back; prescribed that the search can only be made upon having received a written permission from the Director-General or the Changwat Governor and having exhibited the same to the owner or keeper of the place to be searched.


The said written permission is not necessary if the search is carried out by the Director-General or the Changwat Governor himself.


(2) To order, in a written form, the parents, guardian, adoption applicant or officer of the children welfare organization as well as other pertinent person to give statement or submit document or evidence as necessary or to bring on or bring back the child.


(Contents)


Carrying out of duty of the competent authority
17. In carrying out his duty, the competent authority shall be an officer under the Criminal Code.


(Contents)


Bringing a child out of the Kingdom for adoption
18. No person may, directly or indirectly, bring or send any child out of the Kingdom in order to cause him to be adopted unless it is approved by the Minister in accordance with the rules, procedures and conditions determined in the Ministerial Regulations.


(Contents)


Condition for adoption
19. An adoption shall be made following a probationary placement and the endorsement by virtue of the provisions of this Act.


The probationary placement under paragraph shall not apply to the case the adoption applicant is a brother or sister of full or half blood of a child to be adopted, or being his great-grand father or mother, grand father or mother, uncle, aunt or guardian or being other person under the rules and procedures determined in the Ministerial Regulations.[2]


(Contents)


Application for adoption
20. In accordance with the rules, procedures and conditions determined in the Ministerial Regulations, any person who desires to apply for adoption shall make an application therefor together with the letter of consent of the person authorised to consent the adoption according to the law.


The application shall be lodge with the Director-General if the adoption applicant has his domicile within Bangkok Metropolis or in a foreign country, or with the Changwat Governor if having the domicile in other Changwat.


(Contents)


Processes following the application for adoption
21. Upon receipt of the application for adoption, the competent authority shall examine the qualifications and facts as to the livelihood and appropriation of the adoption applicant, of the person authorised to consent the adoption and of the child to be adopted.


(Contents)


Processes following the application for adoption
22. Upon having considered the report of examination or the papers of facts under section 20 and section 21, the Director-General or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be, shall consider whether or not the adoption applicant would be permitted to carry out a probationary placement.


If not, he shall so order and such order can be appealed to the court within sixty days as of the date of receipt of the same. The order of the trial court shall be final.


(Contents)


Probationary placement
23. Upon issuance of the order permitting the probationary placement, the adoption applicant may take a child into his care in order to carry out the same.


Such probationary placement shall be carried out for a period not less than six months.


The rules, procedures and conditions therefor shall be as determined in the Ministerial Regulations.


(Contents)


Withdrawal of the application for adoption
24. Pending the probationary placement, if the adoption applicant withdraws the application for adoption, he shall return the child to the person authorised to consent the adoption or to the competent authority.


Returning the child under paragraph one shall be made without delay. In this respect, the Director-General or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be, shall issue a letter notifying the applicant to return the child within a period of time fixed with regards to the distance and convenience in returning the child and to the welfare of that child.


(Contents)


Withdrawal of the application for adoption
25. Pending the probationary placement, father or mother of the child, whether or not being whom having consented the adoption, may apply for the withdrawal of the application for adoption. Such application shall be lodged with the Director-General or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be. If the Director-General or the Changwat Governor orders the application for adoption be withdrawn, the adoption applicant shall return the child to his parents who applies for the withdrawal and section 24 paragraph two shall apply mutatis mutandis.


In the case the Director-General or the Changwat Governor deems that the application for such withdrawal is detrimental to the welfare of that child, or the parental power of the parents who applies for the withdrawal is revoked by the court, the adoption applicant can continue to the probationary placement. The person who makes the application under paragraph one may appeal the order of the Director-General or the Changwat Governor to the court within thirty days following the date of receipt of that order. The order of the trial court shall be final.


(Contents)


Withdrawal of the application for adoption
26. Pending the probationary placement, if the Director-General or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be, is advised by the competent authority that the adoption applicant is not advisable to adopt that child and he orders the probationary placement to come to an end, the adoption applicant shall return the child to the competent authority and section 24 paragraph two shall apply mutatis mutandis.


The application applicant may appeal the order of the Director-General or the Changwat Governor under paragraph one to the court within thirty days following the date of receipt of that order.


The order of the trial court under paragraph two shall be final.


(Contents)


Registration of adoption
27. When the period of probationary placement is due, it appears that the adoption applicant is advisable to adopt that child and the adoption is endorsed by the Board, such adoption can be registered in accordance with the law governing the same.


For the purposes of the registration of adoption, it shall be deemed that the consent given to the adoption by the person authorised to so consent as submitted under section 20 is the consent given to the registration.


(Contents)


Refused application for adoption
28. When the period of probationary placement is due, it appears that the adoption applicant is not advisable to adopt that child and the adoption is refused by the Board, the Director-General or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be, shall order the adoption applicant to return the child to the person authorised to consent the adoption, to the child’s father, mother, guardian or to the competent authority. In this respect, the adoption must return the child and section 24 paragraph two shall apply mutatis mutandis.


The adoption applicant may appeal the order of the Board under paragraph one to the court within thirty days as of the date of receipt of that order.


Pending the court trial, the adoption applicant may request the court that the child remains under his care.


The order of the trial court under paragraph two and paragraph three shall be final.


(Contents)


Waiver of the right to register the adoption
29. Upon the Board’s endorsement of the adoption under section 27 or in the case the order of the Board is appealed under section 28 and the adoption is approved by the order of the court, if the adoption applicant fails to register the adoption within six months as of the date of receipt of the Board’s endorsement or the date of issuance of the court order, his right to so register shall be deemed waived and the child shall be returned to the person authorised to consent the adoption or to the competent authority, also, section 24 paragraph two shall apply mutatis mutandis.


(Contents)


Duty of the court following an appeal
30. Whenever the order is appealed to the court in accordance with this Act, the court shall submit the copies thereof and the trial date to the Director-General, the chairperson of the Board or the Changwat Governor, as the case may be.


(Contents)


Holding of the trial as to adoption
31. Trial and pronunciation of a court order as to adoption under this Act shall be held in camera and only the followings can be present at the trial chamber:


(1) Parents, guardian or a person authorised to consent the adoption and their lawyer.


(2) The adoption applicant and his lawyer.


(3) Objector and his lawyer.


(4) Court officer.


(5) The Competent authority and the pertinent authority of the children welfare organisation.


(6) Witness, expert and translator.


(7) The person summoned by the court to give statement as to the facts and other person as the court may deem advisable.


If the court considers that the presence at the trial chamber is unadvisable to be taken by any person at any time, the same shall be empowered to order all persons or the person unadvisable to take his presence thereat to exit the trial chamber.


(Contents)


Prohibition of publication of picture, name or any matters as to the adoptee, his parents or guardian, the adopter and the court order
32. No person may make publication of the picture, name or any matters which may cause to be known the child who is to be or is adopted, his parents or guardian or the person who applies for adoption, or may make publication of the court order under this Act with the exception of the case necessary to be so done for official interest.


(Contents)


Exemption of court fees
33. The actions in accordance with this Act shall all be exempted from any kinds of court fees.


(Contents)


Penalty
34. Any person who contravenes section 6 or section 18 shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or a fine not exceeding THB 30,000 or both.


(Contents)


Penalty
35. Any person who obstructs or fails to facilitate the person who carries out duty under section 16 (1) or fails to comply with the order under section 16 (2) shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three month or a fine not exceeding THB 3,000 or both.


(Contents)


Penalty
36. An adoption applicant who fails to return the child in accordance with section 24, section 25 paragraph one, section 26 paragraph one, section 28 paragraph one and section 29 shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or a fine not exceeding THB 10,000 or both.


(Contents)


Penalty
37. Any person who contravenes section 32 shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or a fine not exceeding THB 10,000 or both.


(Contents)


Penalty
38. In the case the person punishable under this Act is a juristic person, its managing directors, managers or representatives shall also be liable for the punishment provided for such offence unless it can be proved that they have had no part to play in the commission of such offence.


(Contents)


Minister in charge of this Act
39. The Minister of Social Development and Human Security* shall have charge and control of the execution of this Act and shall be empowered to appoint competent authorities and issue Ministerial Regulations for the execution of this Act.


Such Ministerial Regulations shall come into force upon their publication in the Government Gazette.


(Contents)


Countersigned by:

S. HOTARAKIT,

Deputy Prime Minister.

Notes[edit]


The Adoption Act, BE 2522 (1979)

Remarks: The grounds on promulgation of this Act are that the adoption which has been restricted amongst the circle of siblings and acquaintances now comes wider to the external persons, both Thais and foreigners, leading to the expedience to determine the conditions and procedures therefor in order to protect the welfare of the children to be adopted with regards to their interests as well as prohibit child trades and protect the advantages of their actual parents and of the adoption applicants. It is, therefore, necessary to enact this Act.


The Adoption Act (No. 2), BE 2533 (1990)

[3] Remarks: The grounds on promulgation of this Act are pursuant to the exemption that the brother or sister of full or half blood of the child to be adopted, or his great-grand father or mother, grand father or mother, uncle, aunt or guardian is not necessary to try giving parental care to that child does not cover other cases which should also be exempted, such as the case a partner in marriage adopts a child of the family of another partner as his own child, leading to the expedience to amend the law giving more chances to have the Ministerial Regulations determining the rules and conditions as to the case exemptible. It is, therefore, necessary to enact this Act.


*The Royal Decree Amending the Legal Provisions to be in accordance with the Transference of Public Agencies’ Authorities under the Act Reforming Ministries, Sub-Ministries and Departments BE 2545 (2002), BE 2545 (2002)

[4] Section 32. In the Adoption Act, BE 2522 (1979), the term “Minister of Interior” shall be amended to be “Minister of Social Development and Human Security”; the term “Department of Public Welfare”, “Department of Social Development and Welfare”; and the term “Director-General of the Department of Public Welfare”, “Director-General of the Department of Social Development and Welfare”.

Remarks: The grounds on promulgation of this Royal Decree are that the Act Reforming Ministries, Sub-Ministries and Departments BE 2545 (2002) makes provisions establishing new public agencies charged with new missions and the Royal Decree Transferring Administrative Affairs and Authorities of the Public Agencies is enacted to be in compliance with the said Act; by virtue of the Act, the authorities of the public agencies, the Ministries or the holders of the offices in the former public agencies are transferred to the new public agencies, and various legal provisions are amended to be in accordance with the authorities transferred; leading to the expedience to amend the legal provisions to be in accordance with the transference of public agencies by amending the names of the public agencies, the Ministries, the holders of the offices or the functionaries in the public agencies in accordance with the transference of authorities and by adding the public agency representatives into the Boards in accordance with the transference of missions from the former public agencies or to the new ones or from the dissolved ones, in order conform with the principles under the said Act and Royal Decree, so that the pertinent persons would execute the laws with no uncertainness, unless they have to look into the legal provisions transferring authorities that to which public agencies or to whom the missions provided by the laws are transferred. It is, therefore, necessary to enact this Royal Decree.


Footnotes[edit]

  1. Published in the Government Gazette: volume 96/special issue/special part/page 21/April 22, BE 2522 (1979).
  2. Section 19 paragraph two is amended by the Adoption Act (No. 2), BE 2533 (1900).
  3. Published in the Government Gazette: volume 107/part 187/special issue/page 40/September 26, BE 2533 (1990)
  4. Published in the Government Gazette: volume 119/part 102 A/page 66/October 8, BE 2545 (2002)



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