A civil ceremony is a nonreligious, legal marriage ceremony presided over by a government official. A civil marriage ceremony can be conducted by a registrar or deputy registrar for the district in which it is to take place.
In Germany marriage may only be contracted before a registrar, a religious ceremony is optional. The couple can then follow this with a religious ceremony, a secular service, or whatever celebration they choose of their choice.
Below are all the information you need to plan a registry office wedding in Germany.
To marry in Germany, you have to be at least 18 years old. If you or your partner is not German, there are a few extra things to bear in mind. You must have been living in the locality for at least 21 days before visiting the town hall to give your intention to marry.
Foreigners who are not from the EU cannot usually get married in Germany on a visitor visa. Instead, they will need a visa that is valid for three to six months. If they are marrying a German citizen, they can normally obtain a residence permit.
Notice: To begin the marriage process you need to submit an application at the local registry office (standesamt) located in the town hall (rathaus), and give notice of the impending marriage.
- Passports of both partners
- Official Statement of Residency
- Original long-form birth certificate with parents’ names
- Birth certificates of any children the couple have had together (get this translated)
- Certificate of No Impediment (CNI) (get this translated)
- Affidavit confirming both parties are single
- Marriage questionnaire (from the registry office)
- Certificate of finality of divorce (if applicable) (get this translated)
- Marriage certificates from any previous marriages
- Death certificate of the previous spouse (if applicable)
- Confirmation of name change (if applicable)
- Financial statement
Ceremony: The process of getting married in Germany can be fairly quick, as couples must tie the knot within six months of receiving their marriage license. Couples have a civil ceremony at a registry office. They can then choose to follow this with a religious ceremony or reception.
Registry offices in Germany often have several different wedding rooms to choose from, depending on preference and the number of guests that will be attending the ceremony. These offices are usually located in one of the community’s finer buildings, such as a city hall or palace.
Both partners must understand what is taking place at the wedding ceremony. Therefore, if you or your partner do not speak fluent German, you will need to arrange to have a certified interpreter present at the ceremony.
Fee: The fee is between 80 and 120 euros. Usually the registry office will send a request for payment of the fees before beginning to process the application.
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