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On 5 February 2013, the Cabinet approved the resolution regarding the proposal of the Non-Life Insurance Bill and the Life Insurance Bill for amendment of the Non-Life Insurance Act B.E. 2535 (1992) and Life Insurance Act B.E. 2535 (1992) (the “Bills”) to the House of Representatives for deliberation as an urgent matter. On 21 March 2013, the House of Representatives passed the resolution to accept the principle of the Bills, which are currently under consideration of the Ad-hoc Committee. → Read more

Today creative work, the product of its creator’s perseverance which is protected by the copyright law, is created or displayed not only on tangible media like paper, fabric or ceramic but also on intangible media, widely known as digital media, like CD, DVD or the Internet. As Thailand’s current copyright law, which provides protection for the copyright owner’s rights as well as imposes penalty for infringement, is not sufficient to protect those creative work on digital media, infringements on copyrighted work have skyrocketed. → Read more

The ASEAN Economic Community and the European Union’s Experience – The Purpose, the Inception, the Difference, and the Issue

In November 2002, leaders of the Association of the South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) agreed on the proposed creation of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2020. This was followed by the adoption of the AEC Blueprint in 2007 along with the affirmed and strong commitment by leaders to accelerate such economic integration by 2015. It is easy or perhaps deceiving for one to compare the AEC with the European Union (EU) with much excitement and enthusiasm for that the name ‘Economic Community’ itself is suggestive to those of the EU’s experience. However, one must realize the difference between the EU and the AEC as confirmed by the Governor of the Bank of Thailand, Dr. Prasarn Trairatvorakul’s address at Sasin Update-Reunion 2011: “The AEC is not, and has no intention of transforming ASEAN into a European style union. We should refrain from perpetuating any grand, Euro-style visions. ASEAN lacks supranational policy-making bodies like the European Central Bank or the European Commission which are required to make such an entity function properly.” → Read more

Intellectual properties, particularly copyright, patent and trademark, serve as profoundly valuable assets for a business, and different sets of laws have been established to protect the exclusive rights of each holder of intellectual property. Some intellectual properties require notification or registration in order to obtain protection. Formerly, protection of rights only applied exclusively in the countries where the properties were created. Systems of international protection over intellectual properties have now been adopted by means of multilateral agreements. → Read more

Mediation has accumulatively been chosen over other available means of dispute settlements. Previous mediation systems before the Regulations on Mediation by Public Prosecutors, B.E. 2555 (the “Regulation”) was issued did not impose any obligation upon the accountable prosecutor to notify the disputants in writing of their rights to the mediation process to be conducted by responsible prosecutor(s), but the disputants themselves shall initiate the mediation process through officers in charge. This Regulation has come into force since 1 July 2012, and it demands collaboration of the Department of People’s Rights Protection and Legal Aid (the “Department”). → Read more

The Computer Crime Act B.E. 2550 (“Act”) imposes criminal offences under Section 14 that whoever, for example, (1) inputs into a computer system any obscene data which is accessible to the public; (2) inputs into a computer system any data in violation of national security according to the Criminal Code; or (3) inputs into computer system false data in a manner likely to cause injury to national security, another person or the public, shall be punished with imprisonment not exceeding 5 years and a fine not exceeding 100,000 Baht, or both. → Read more

Submission of a written order to refuse public health services that would otherwise prolong living with a terminal illness preventing a natural death

Dignity, rights, liberty and body are protected by the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand (B.E. 2550) which is congruent with the Declaration of Lisbon on the Rights of the Patient (1981). The declaration specifically affirms the patient’s right of self-determination to make free decisions regarding his or her own body. The patient is entitled to humane terminal care and to be provided with all available assistance in making dying as dignified and as comfortable as possible. → Read more

On 2 November 2011, the remuneration committee issued a notification increasing the minimum wage to 300 Baht effective 1 April 2012. With an approximate 40% raise for employment wages in Bangkok, NakhonPathom, Nonthaburi, PathumThani, Phuket, SamutPrakan and SamutSakhon, this action has prompted an outcry among those in the business sector who foresee this surge of minimum wage as negatively impacting business costs, especially in businesses where a large labour force is required. This shift has also brought about a growing concern in regard to future foreign direct investment as this newly-increased pay rate will no longer make investment attractive in Thailand. As a consequence, some of those affected have filed claims against the remuneration committee to the Administrative Court stating that such minimum rate increase is unlawful and that interim measures of protection are needed in order to suppress or minimize the impact of the minimum pay rise. → Read more

Severe flooding that occurred since mid of 2011 through to the beginning of 2012 in Thailand has been considered as one of the worst natural disasters in terms of costs and the amount of businesses affected. There are a number of measures to alleviate burdens of different nature which have been put in place to assist businesses in including tax relief measures. And although there are several tax measures in the forms of tax exemptions and tax incentives already in place since before the latest flooding occurrence, but as the flooding situation was aggravated to such a severe extent towards the end of 2011, the government introduced additional tax exemption and incentive measures, details of which are summarized in the tables below: → Read more

The Department of Intellectual Property, the competent authority, prepared and submitted a Draft Trade Mark Bill (the “Bill”) to the Council of State for its consideration and review in 2008. After pending for consideration for more than 3 years, the Council of State recently approved the Bill and has submitted it to the Cabinet for their consideration and approval. → Read more