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Can COVID-19 be Taken as Force Majeure For Contracts Performance? COVID-19是否可成泰國履行合約中不可抗力因素

Since the COVID-19 outbreak in 2019, many companies have been facing crisis of

breach of contracts due to negative economic impact. Some people may wonder whether COVID-19 can be considered as force majeure in contract?


In accordance to Section 8 of Thai Civil and Commercial Code, force majeure means “event that could not have been reasonably anticipated and is otherwise beyond a party’s control.” In addition, it also indicates that the debtor is not in default so long as the performance is not affected in consequence of a circumstance for which he/she is not responsible.[1] The debtor is therefore relieved from his/her obligation to perform if the performance becomes impossible in consequence of a circumstance, for which he/she is not responsible, occurring after the creation of the obligation.[2]

《泰國民商法》第8條規定,不可抗力指 “無法理性期待的事件且不受控制。”此外,《泰國民商法》也指出只要發生非債務人負責的狀況,債務人就算沒有違約。另外,該法也說明在債務人的義務建立後,如果發生非債務人負責的事件導致無法履約,債務人的履行義務會被解除。

However, Civil and Commercial Code does not have precedent cases of force majeure. Currently only Ministry of Labour announces that COVID-19 is considered as force majeure under Social Security Act. Therefore, other cases should be interpreted case by case.


Normally when a party applies force majeure, it should include following factors:


l The incident stops the party from performing the contract due to force majeure;


l It’s not possible to perform the contracts during force majeure;


l It’s not possible to perform the contracts after the force majeure.


In summary, it is important to always include the force majeure clauses in contracts in case of facing unforeseeable emergencies when performing contracts.


[1] Thai Civil and Commercial Code, Section 205. [2] Ibid, Section 219.

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