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How to get married abroad

Marriage is a union between two consenting adults. Particular regulations come into play when marrying someone of the same nationality as yourself. However, the rules are slightly different when tying the knot with a foreigner. If you are looking to wed your fiancé outside the UK, you may want to ensure you have all the necessary details to ensure a smooth transition during and after the process. Here’s what you should know.

How to get married abroad

Who can get married abroad?

Getting married in the UK is a pretty straightforward process for Britons. As long as you prove you are old enough to get married and that you are not hinged to someone else when you want to solemnise your new union, you are free to go ahead and tie the knot with your partner.

However, UK nationals looking to get married abroad have a little more work to do before solemnising their union. You should have all relevant items within your immediate reach, get travel insurance or pay for an international insurance policy available in the foreign country, liaise with the best wedding planners early enough, consider your partner’s culture while planning for the event, limit gifts to cash and factor in the unavailability of most family members and friends.

Why choose to marry abroad?

A myriad of reasons are responsible for couples choosing to marry abroad. Some of these may include good weather, travel restrictions, destination wedding preferences, easier planning or budgetary concerns.

Requirements And Documentation Needed

Once you decide to wed your partner abroad, you should fulfil particular requirements for the process to be legally recognized in and out of the UK. Depending on where your wedding will take place, you must adhere to their government’s requirements. You must also fulfil certain requirements recommended by the UK government for your marriage to be recognized as legal in the country, such as:

Where And How to Apply

If you’re set on marrying abroad, you should contact the UK marriage registry office for more information on how to go about the process. However, if you cannot visit the premises in person, you can check out the website for a complete guide and forms to register your marriage.

It would be best if you liaised with the foreign embassy before the wedding. Ensure you give notice beforehand and adhere to the regulations stipulated by the government for a seamless process. Some countries require you to be in the country three weeks before the wedding, but this may change depending on each destination.

Before you get married outside your country, you should understand the laws and marital dynamics that run the foreign country’s marriage setting. These are:

  • • Affidavits
  • • Dowry payment and other cultural practices
  • • Legal Requirements
  • • Marital laws
  • • Parental consent for partners who are 16 years old
  • • Residency
  • • Travel requirements

What Should You Do to Validate/Register Your Marriage?

If you took the right procedure to solemnise your marriage abroad, you have a right to validate it in the UK. Visit the registry office for a detailed explanation of what you should do to register your marriage. However, your union should be permitted in the UK for you to complete the validation process successfully. If you did a wedding, you would only have to translate the marriage certificate. However, you may have to register the marriage if you are in a civil union.

Cost, Validity, And Processing Time

The cost of getting married abroad varies from one country to the next. You should check with the embassy of the country you intend to wed in before beginning the application. However, if you want to register your marriage in the UK, it will cost you £35 per person for a notice of marriage or civil partnership. The process takes 28 days to process a certificate in the UK. This document is valid for as long as the couple is together.