Thailand Property Title Deeds

Thailand Real Estate Law

In Thailand land law, a title deed is a document which proves legal ownership of the land and also records any encumbrances such as mortgages, servitudes and leases held over the property or land.

Key information is recorded on a Thailand title deed: full name, address of the land rights owner, location of the land, area of the land and a map specifying the property’s boundaries. Duplicate title deeds are made – one for the land owner and one to be retained at the Government Land Office. Most types of title deed are registered with a local Land Department. Each municipality has its own Land Department. Certain types of title deeds, such as agricultural land would be held and registered at a different office.

There are many different types of legal title deed in Thailand:

  1. Freehold title deed (Chanote or Nor Sor 4): grants the holder full rights over the land – the strongest and most favorable type of title deedin Thailand.
  2. Nor Sor 3 Gor:assigns ownership of land with fairly certain boundaries; final official measuring is required by the land department along with the placing of official markers before it is a full title deed.
  3. Nor Sor 3: ownership of the land covered in this title is relatively certain, however the boundary markers are normally placed by property owners rather than government authorities. Accordingly, the the boundaries and size of the land maybe inaccurate.
  4. Sor Por Kor 4-01: an agricultural title deed, usually found in rural areas.
  5. Sor Kor 1: are land title deeds issued up until 1972, generally used to provide rights of use and occupation to farmers. They serve to notify others of these rights to the land, and permit the holder to upgrade the title deed (to Nor Sor 3 or Nor Sor 3 Kor, for example). Sor Kor 1 title deeds cannot be held by foreigners.

Other legal rights in Thailand land law that are of a lesser nature than a title deed would be:

  1. Possessory Right: a type of title deed, but one that is rarely used as it is one of the weakest types of land rights. It is normally an inherited land right proven by tax payments at the local administrative office.
  2. Right of habitation: the right to stay in a house, or other dwelling, without having to pay rent.
  3. Right of usufruct: the right to use or obtain a profit or benefit from property belonging to another person.
  4. Right of superficies:  a right to build upon land without owning it.