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The procedure of marriage for foreigners in Poland

 Today a lot of foreigners decide to get married in Poland. There are two official forms of marriage. The first form is a civil marriage which is solemnized within the framework of civil law in the civil registry office. The second form is a religious marriage. In this article we will look more closely at the procedure of contracting a civil marriage.

 To contract marriage it is necessary to go to a civil registry office to submit an application and to set a wedding date. The law permits to the future spouses to choose a civil registry office they like to get married. Before the visiting of a civil registry office it’s better to prepare the next set of documents:

  • Identity documents of the future spouses;
  • Birth certificates of the future spouses;*
  • The document, confirming the payment of a stamp duty of 84 PLN;
  • In a case of widowhood- a death certificate of the previous spouse;*
  • In a case of divorce – a marriage certificate with a divorce mark or a pronouncement of divorce;*
  • The document confirming that the foreigner has the right to get married abroad;

* All the documents have to be translated by a sworn translator into Polish. 

Now let’s look more closely at the procedure of getting the document which allows to get married in the territory of Poland. Citizens of some countries (Belarus and Russia for example) can get the document confirming that the foreigner has no obstacles in getting marriage at the Embassy. If it’s impossible to get this document at the Embassy or it can’t be emitted by the country of origin (like in Ukraine and in the USA) it’s necessary to make an application to the Polish court. The application can be written by a foreigner and contain the next information: the date and the place of the filling of an application, name and surname of inquirer, passport number (or PESEL) and the reason why it’s impossible to get this document. The payment of a stamp duty is 100 PLN. The procedure can last 1-6 months. The copy of passport and a copy of birth certificate are frequently required (with the translation by a sworn translator into Polish).

Marriage will occur not earlier than in 1 month after the submission of documents and an application in the civil registry office. During the wedding ceremony, the head of the registry office must confirm the details of the spouses and witnesses, so identity documents will be needed.

The ceremony can take place in the wedding hall itself or outside it - in any place chosen by the newlyweds. In the case of an off-site ceremony, an additional fee of 1000 PLN will be charged. Remember, if at least one of the spouses or witnesses does not speak Polish, an interpreter must present at the wedding.