Foundations are commonly used as a vehicle for philanthropic individuals to share their blessings to the less fortunate. The Thai Commercial and Civil Code defines a "foundation" as assets arranged only for the purpose of charity, religion, arts, science, literature, education, or any public interest that are duly registered under the regulations of the law. Furthermore, no trustee, director or any member may directly benefit from the profits earned by the foundation incidental to its operation.
The Thailand Ministry of the Interior has prescribed the rules and regulations for setting up of foundations through the legislation of The Ministerial Regulations of Regulations, Operation and Registration of the Foundation B.E. 2545 (2002).
The application form for the registration of a Thailand Foundation may be submitted to the registrar of the district which has jurisdiction over the place where the principal office of the Foundation will be established. Along with the application, the following documents are likewise necessary:
- List of assets of the owners
- List of allocated assets for the Foundation and registered document indicating the promise to donate these assets
- Copy of testament if an asset was given to the Foundation by virtue there of
- Name, address and profession of all the members of the board of directors of the Foundation
- Regulations of the Foundation
- Copy of ID card or other types of Identification cards issued by the government and copy of the house registration of the owners and members of the board of directors (if he is a priest or a foreigner, other documents reflecting his status and address would suffice)
- Map of the principal office and its branch offices (if any) and the written consent of the landlord or owner of these properties.
- Minutes of the meeting convened for the establishment of the Foundation
The assets of a Foundation must have a value of 500,000 baht, with at least 250,000 baht in cash. Certain charitable objectives allow a Foundation to have assets of only 250,000 baht in value, with only 100,000 baht in cash.
Upon receipt of the aforementioned papers, the District Office will inspect the correctness of the application. Thereafter, the District Office will have the application transferred to the Ministry of Interior. If the Foundation has any objectives that are relevant to any other government department, the Ministry of Interior will send the application to that department for their consideration.
The entire application process may take up to one year after which the applicant will be informed of the Ministry of Interior's decision.