Legal Barriers to Escrow in Thailand
Finding escrow services in Thailand can be hard, but there are a few legal options. Some large international developers will cooperate with their buyers to use offshore escrow services in certain situations. However, the use of offshore financial institutions can add additional risk due to currency exchange issues.
In some situations, the parties to a property sale and purchase agreement will arrange a pseudo-escrow arrangement by using dual agents according to section 805 of the Civil and Commercial Code. However, because these are purely private agreements, requiring the parties to set up and understand a sophisticated legal arrangement. In addition, the role of the agent is unregulated potentially increasing the risk of the transaction.
While Thai law does not recognize any kind of trust, the Escrow Act B.E. 2551 (2008) allows certain authorized commercial banks to provide escrow account services to customers who have entered into a sale and purchase agreement with a developer. However, these escrow services are still not available at all branches of the authorized banks. In addition, many developers are resistant to the use of escrow account services although a few large developers, Golden Land Property, Sansiri, and Tararom, have reportedly used escrow services a few times in the past before discontinuing the practice.
The authorized banks are:
- Bangkok Bank
- HSBC Bank
- Kasikorn Thai Bank
- Siam Commercial Bank
- Standard Chartered (Thailand) Bank
- Sumitomo Misui Banking Corp
- Krung Sri Ayuthaya Bank
- Citibank Bangkok Branch
- ABN Amro N.V. Bangkok Branch
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Siam Legal is an international law firm with experienced lawyers, attorneys, and solicitors both in Thailand law and international law. This Thailand law firm offers comprehensive legal services in Thailand to both local and foreign clients for Litigation such as civil & criminal cases, labor disputes, commercial cases, divorce, adoption, extradition, fraud, and drug cases. Other legal expertise of the law firm varied in cases involving corporate law such as company registration & Thailand BOI, family law, property law, and private investigation.