Common law marriages and visas
I am looking to retire in Phuket on a non-immigrant visa. I am over 50 and meet all the financial criteria. I note that a foreign retiree married to a foreigner may apply to include his or her spouse on the non-immigrant visa.
I am a British man and my spouse is Filipina. We have been together for a number of years. In our current country of residence, Singapore, our common-law status was recognized following a statutory declaration witnessed by a notary public and an endorsment letter to that effect from the British Consulate.
Our question: would the same procedure be acceptable proof of marriage in Thailand for the purpose of applying for a dependent visa?
Brian Evans, Singapore.
The common-law wife status declaration as described in your query will not be recognized by Immigration for the purpose of obtaining a one-year dependent visa.
Only a legally married spouse may be granted a dependent visa under a spouse’s retirement visa. In Thailand, only a marriage certificate may be used for this purpose.
Friedrich Fauma, Senior Partner of Phuket International Law Office.