THAILAND: Access to justice for children

This report is part of CRIN's access to justice for children project, looking at the status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in national law, the status of children involved in legal proceedings, the legal means to challenge violations of children’s rights and the practical considerations involved in challenging violations.

Thailand ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) with a reservation concerning Article 22 on refugee children. Thailand has also ratified all three Optional Protocols to the CRC. Most provisions of the CRC have been incorporated into national law through the 2003 Child Protection Act, and only treaties which have been incorporated can be directly enforced in court.  Although the CRC does not take precedence over national law, the Thai Government ensures that any relevant laws that are drafted are as compatible with it as possible. The Juvenile Court and the Family Court may use the CRC when interpreting the law, but where there is a contradiction, national law prevails. A child may bring claims to a criminal or civil court or the Constitutional or Administrative Court through their representative. Children and their representatives can also petition the National Human Rights Commission or Ombudsman in writing, which would be submitted to the Constitutional or Administrative Court for a decision as to the constitutionality of any legal provision or administrative action.

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Please note that these reports are hosted by CRIN as a resource for Child Rights campaigners, researchers and other interested parties. Unless otherwise stated, they are not the work of CRIN and their inclusion in our database does not necessarily signify endorsement or agreement with their content by CRIN.