Interview of Bangkok based lawyer
Mister Dubout, a belgian lawyer based in Bangkok.
What legal services do you provide to people retiring in Thailand?
Mostly we assist them with immigration formalities such as retiree visas, investment visas, dependent visas and so on… For those who whish not only to retire in Thailand but also to purchase a property we can assist with the legal formalities such as due diligence (checking the ownership documents of the property) sale and purchase agreements and property transfer formalities. We can also do wills or any other legal documents or formalities.
How did you arrive in Thailand and how long have you stayed here?
I came here on a sabbatical 13 years ago and decided to stay.
What appeals to you about living in Thailand?
I guess the climate – as I never liked the cold – the conditions of life and, of course, Thai people, who are mostly very agreeable to deal with.
From a lifestyle perspective, what does Thailand offer retirees that is different from other destinations?
It offers them a better lifestyle and better living conditions than they would have at home at a lesser cost. I think retiring in Thailand is a smart decision.
What level of income do you see as appropriate for a secure and comfortable retirement here?
It all depends on what your resources are, but I think Thailand offers option not only to wealthy retirees but also to people with less money. I mean a single retiree renting a small apartment could live there very well with a $1,500-2,000 monthly pension.
Are there any common errors or pitfalls that retirees need to be aware of?
They should check whether their social insurance also covers them if they are living more than three consecutive month in Thailand. I mean a lot of retiree have health protection plan as part of their social security but the cover when leaving abroad may not always be absolute. So they should first check this issue when coming to leave in Thailand.
What advice would you give about real estate in terms of location, type of property?
It all depends on your personality. If you like mountains and a temperate climate, maybe Chiang Mai. If you are a quiet person and like the sea, Hua Hin. If you like the sea and nightlife, then Pattaya, Phuket or Koh Samui.
What are the key tips for making the most out of living in Thailand?
It’s difficult to answer this question. I mean we each have our own personality and we may not appreciate Thailand the same way.