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Procedure for Labor Litigation in Thailand


Part I: Filing


Labor complaints shall be filed with the labor court within the territorial jurisdiction of which the cause of action arose. The Thai labor court may allow the plaintiff to file the complaint within its territorial jurisdiction of which the plaintiff or the defendant has domicile. The place of work of the employees shall be deemed as the place where the cause of action arose.


The plaintiff may request that the labor court transfer the case to another competent labor court at any stage of the trial prior to judgment or order disposing of the case, when there is necessity or appropriate reason thereto. If the labor court deems such request appropriate, it may grant it.


If the labor court accepted a case for adjudication, it shall fix the date and time for hearing without delay and summon the defendant to appear in court by the time fixed therein. The summons shall set forth the particulars of the charge and the relief sought. The labor court shall also order the plaintiff to appear in court on such date and time. The defendant may file a written answer prior to his appearance on the date and time fixed by the labor court.


When the plaintiff and defendant appear in court, the Thai labor court shall mediate the parties to reach an agreement or a compromise. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement or a compromise, the labor court shall proceed with the trial.


If the plaintiff fails to appear without notifying the labor court of the reason of his non-appearance, it shall be deemed that the plaintiff has no intention to proceed with the case. The labour court shall then issue an order striking the case out of the case list.


If the defendant on whom the summons has been served but does not appear without notifying the court of the reason for his non-appearance, the labor court shall issue an order declaring the defendant to be in default and then try the case ex parte.





Part II – Trial and Judgment


In the trial phase of  labor litigation in Thailand, the labor court shall take into  account the  working conditions, the  cost  of  living,  the  employee’s

hardship,  the  level  of  wages  or  the  rights  and  any  other  benefits  of the employee in the same type of business as well as the status of the employer’s business and the economic and social condition in general so as to provide fairness to both parties.


When all the necessary evidence has been produced in labor court, the trial shall be closed. However, the parties may close their case by oral argument on the day the trial is over. The labor court shall then pronounce the judgment or order within three days from such date. The associate judge who has already signed in the judgment or order may not present at the time of pronouncing the said judgment or order.


The judgment or order of the labor court shall be made in writing and shall state or specify the facts as found in brief and the decision on the issues along with the grounds for such decision. The labour court shall send a copy of the judgment or order to the Thai Department of Labor without delay.


This article was provided by Siam Legal, an international law firm with offices in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Hua Hin, Pattaya, Phuket, and Samui. Siam Legal publishes legal guides to litigation in Thailand on its website.


Siam Legal International

Interchange 21 Building, 23rd Floor, 399 Sukhumvit Road

North Klongtoey, Wattana, Bangkok 10110

Tel: 662 259-8100

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