The Law and Childhood Paternity

The Law and Childhood Paternity
The Law and Childhood Paternity

Some men and women who live together as husband and wife do not register their marriage; some register their marriage and divorce later. In both circumstances if the wife becomes pregnant and gives birth, the newborn child is not deemed to be a legitimate child of the man unless the child was born during the registered marriage or within 310 days after the end of the marriage.

This assumes that the child was the legitimate child of the Man) except when:

1 Father and mother of the child registered their marriage later
2 The father of the child submits the application to the Local Office, including supporting evidence for investigation, with consent of the mother.
3 The father submitted a petition to the Court and the Court has an order that the father has the right to register the child as his legitimate child, provided in Section 1547 of the Commercial and Civil Code. The child was born at the time that the mother and father were not legally married and will become a legitimate child when the father and mother register their marriage later or the father makes a registration of legitimate child with a court order to certify that he is a legitimate child of the father.

Legal Issues: In case the father does not make any registration of the legitimation of the child, does the child have any legal right to proceed with legal action to prove that he/she is a legitimate child of the father? In consideration Section 1556 of the Commercial and Civil Code: Paragraph 1 provides that legal actions for child legitimation, in case the child is under 15 years of age the case must be made by his guardian.

In case the child has no guardian or the guardian becomes incompetent, the closest relative or the State Attorney can proceed the case on his behalf. Paragraph 2 In case the child is over 15 years of age the child may proceed with the case him/herself without obtaining any consent of the guardian. Paragraph 3 In case the child is mature he/she may proceed with the case from the day that he/her becomes 20 years of age. The implementation of Paragraph 1 & 2 can be easily be completed with proof. The implementation of Paragraph 3 needs to proceed within 1 year from the child’s maturity date. There is a legal issue of time limitation.

If the child proceeds beyond 1 year can it be done? If we refer to the general provision of law and previous Judgements of the Supreme Court it can be found that the time limitations may proceed if the matter is not about public order or good morale. The Judge can consider t he case providing there are no objections from any interested parties. This means that the child is entitled to submit the Petition to the Court even though it is beyond the time limitation and can get the Court Order to prove that he is a legitimate child of the father, if no one makes any objection to his Petition.

There was an Appeal Court decision made in the Case No: Yor Chor 123/2560, Red No: 297/2560, Nakhon Naiyok Juvenile and Family Court, that the Petitioner submitted the Petition to the Court for Child Legitimation. The first Court made the announcement of objections of Interested Persons but no one made any objection. The Court dismissed the Case because the Case was beyond the limitation of time to proceed, the Petitioner disagreed with that decision and appealed to the Appeal Court. The Appeal Court, Juvenile and Family Department, had to consider whether the First Court decision to dismiss the Case due to limitation of time was legal or not. The Appeal Court gave the opinion that even though the legitimation of the child Case must proceed within 1 year of becoming an adult (20 Years of age) this was not a matter with regard of public order or good morale, therefore the Appeal Court reversed the first Court’s decision and decided that the child is the legitimate child of the deceased as provided in Section 1555.

Being a legitimate child is important to become the heir of the deceased father © Khumpol Benjamas Senior Partner / Senior Lawyer
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