Translation of Thai Laws and their related legislations

A guideline for requesting the Office of the Council of State (the “OCS”) to translate law and certify the translation of law (the “Guideline”) was proposed by the OCS and it was approved by the Cabinet on 12 October 2020. The purpose of this Guideline is to set the transparent and systematic method in translating and publishing the translation of law to the public.

Summary of the Guideline are as follows:

  1. The government agencies shall provide and publish the translation of their responsible laws, rules, regulations and notices in the ASEAN official language within 1 year from the date of the Cabinet’s resolution in their information technology system, including submitting translation of the said laws, rules, regulations and notices to the OCS for publishing in the national legal database system without submitting the same to the OCS for certification. A following note at the end of the translation shall be specified “This translation is provided by (name of responsible government agency) as the competent authority and is for information purposes only. Whilst (name of responsible government agency) has made efforts to ensure the accuracy and correctness of the translation, the original Thai texts as formally adopted and published shall in all events remain the sole authoritative texts having the force of law.”
  2. The OCS shall provide and publish the translation of laws which is not in the responsibility of any government agency and shall provide the same in order to support any legal opinion or any assignment assigned by the Cabinet, the Prime Minister or the Deputy Prime Minister.
  3. In case that the OCS finds any mistake in the translation of the laws provided and submitted by any government agency, the OCS then shall order such government agency to revise it and submit its amendment to the OCS instead of the prior one for publishing in the national legal database system.
  4. The OCS shall improve and disseminate knowledges regarding translation of the laws, such as frequently used glossaries, standard sentence patterns, rules for translating the important laws, as well as advice on translation of the laws for the government agencies in order to create the common translation standard through various communication channels.
person wearing silver ring holding white book page

From now, the accurate translation of laws and their related legislations should be published widely for the public to access and use.

Author: Panisa Suwanmatajarn and Jinnaphat Srithepthamrong

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