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Part 3
Court and Proceedings


Section 12 The Court shall have power to try and adjudicate cases as well as issuing orders on the request or application submitted to it under this Act.

The Court's judgment or order shall be final.

Section 13 The consideration for the child return shall proceed as follows:

(1) In the case where the time period commencing from the day the child was removed or retained until the request is filed with the Court does not reach one year, the Court shall consider forthwith whether to return the child;

(2) In the case where the time period commencing from the day the child is removed or retained until the request is filed with the Court is from one year upwards, the Court may consider ordering the child return unless the child has adapted to the new environment;

(3) In the case where it is manifest that the child has departed from Thailand, the Court may suspend the proceedings or dismiss the request;

(4) The Court may dismiss the request for the child return in the following matters:

(a) The person with custody rights over the child did not exercise them while the child was removed or retained or consented to it at the initial stage or subsequently acquiesced in it;

(b) The child return may expose seriously physical or psychological harm to the child or place the child in an intolerable situation;

(c) The child objects to being returned and the Court is of the opinion that the child has attained an age and degree of maturity at which it is appropriate to take account of his or her objection;

(d) The child return will contravene Thailand's fundamental principles on human rights and liberty; (e) The child attains the age of 16 years.

The Court shall also take account of the child's information as proposed by the Central Authority or the Competent Authority of the child's habitual residence to supplement its consideration in issuing the order.

Section 14 In the case where the Court has not reached its decision according to the request within six weeks from the day of its receipt for the child return, the Central Authority or the public prosecutor, after receiving the application from the applicant or the requesting State's Central Authority, may ask for the facts then notifies the applicant or the requesting State's Central Authority.

Section 15 In the case where there are both a request for the child return and a dispute on custody rights, the Court can proceed with its consideration on the matter of custody rights after it has considered and ordered not to return the child.

Section 16 The Court, in considering the request for the child return, may order the applicant to submit the decision of the court or the other agency with power to make a final decision in the country of the child's habitual residence indicating that the child's removal or retention is in breach of custody rights for complementing the decision whether to return the child.

Section 17 The application for assistance in the exercise of access rights over the child shall be made in accordance with the rules, procedures and conditions as the Central Authority prescribes.

Ascendants, guardians and persons with custody rights over the child, legal representatives or persons related to the child in the same manner are entitled to apply for the assistance under paragraph 1.

The provisions on the request for the child return in this Chapter shall apply mutatis mutandis to the proceedings on the exercise of access rights over the child.

Chapter 3
Request for Assistance from a Foreign Country


Section 18 The applicant in Thailand wishing to request the assistance from a foreign country for the exercise of custody rights and access rights under this Act shall refer the matters to the Central Authority according to the regulation he or she prescribes. In this regard, the provisions in Chapter 2, Part 1 shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Chapter 4


Section 19 The request, document and evidence submitted to the Court under this Act shall be admissible.

Section 20 The application or other documents submitted to the Central Authority shall be made in the requesting country's language and accompanied by the Thai language translation or where that is not feasible, a translation into English.

Section 21 This Act does not deprive the right of the person with custody rights and the person with access rights over the child to file a request directly with the Court under this Act or other laws.

Section 22 No security, bond or deposit, however described, shall be required to guarantee the payment of costs and expenses of the Central Authority's undertakings or the Court's proceedings.

Section 23 The Office of the Attorney General shall bear the Central Authority's expenses in applying this Act except the expenses for the child return.

Section 24 All expenses in applying this Act shall be in accord with the rules, procedures and conditions as prescribed under the ministerial regulation.

Section 25 In filing a request with the Court for the order on the child return or the access rights exercise under this Act, the applicant may ask the Court together with the request so filed, or file an application at any time period while the case under the request is pending trial in the Court for ordering the remover, the retainer or the impeder against the access rights exercise to be responsible for the expenses so far as necessarily incurred to the applicant or in the applicant's behalf, including expenses for travelling, locating the child, legal counsels or advisers and the child return.

The Court shall make the order requested under paragraph 1 as it deems reasonable.

Counter – Signature Yingluck Shinawatra Prime Minister

Remarks: The reason for proclaiming the use of this Act is that Thailand has not yet had the law on international cooperation in civil matters regarding breach of custody rights, having objects of protecting the child from harm arising from wrongful removal or retention and returning the child promptly to the country of habitual residence as well as ensuring the protection of access rights. Moreover, Thailand has already acceded to the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction of 1980. Therefore, it has an obligation to comply with it in various aspects such as designating the Central Authority, government officials with power and duty to locate the child's whereabouts, securing the child return and ensuring the access rights exercise, designating the government agency with authority to take provisional care of the child pending the return process as well as assigning the power, duty and proceedings of the Court. It is thus necessary to enact this Act.

Published in the Government Gazette, Vol. 130 Part 2 Gor( A ) dated 9th January 2556 ( 2013)

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