Legalised Marriage Certificates

 

What is a Legalised Marriage Certificate?

A legalised marriage certificate is an ‘authorised’ legitimate copy of a marriage certificate.

To obtain a legalised certificate requires an authorised copy to be ordered from the registry office and then the Government Foreign Office or Foreign Affairs department in the relevant country affixes the Apostille stamp, thus authorising the contents.

Once the certificate has been legalised it will furthermore need to be translated by an Official Translator.

 

Process For Obtaining A Certificate

Obtaining a legalised copy of your marriage certificate will of course depend on where you got married. Below are guidelines on a country per country basis on how to obtain a certificate.

 

Spain

We should first consider the case where the marriage took place in Spain. In many ways this is the simplest case as you just need to get the certificate – there is no need to get it legalised or translated.

You should get a ‘literal’ copy of the marriage certificate and you will need to apply to the local registry where you married.

There are a number of ways of requesting a copy, such as in person at the local registry or via a number of online services, for example: Zertifica. (If you are unable to understand Spanish you can request that Advocate Abroad arrange this for you for a small fee).

 

UK

As before, there are a number of ways of obtaining a marriage certificate for those who were married in the UK but then have lived as a married couple in Spain.

You can find information as well as order a copy of the certificate here: UK Marriage Certificates.

Once you have received your copy of the marriage certificate you will need to send it to the UK Government’s legalisation service for the Apostille stamp to be attached.

Instructions on how to do this can be found on the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website.

You will then have a legalised copy of the marriage certificate and will need to have it translated by an official translator before use by the court. A comprehensive list of approved official translators can be downloaded from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website or simply contact Advocate Abroad for approved translators in your area.

Please note that should birth certificates of any children of the marriage born in the UK be required the same links can be used to find out more information and to order copies.

Once the legalised copy of the marriage/birth certificates have been arranged you will then need to hand them over to the procurador for presentation to the court.

 

Ireland

A certified copy of an Irish marriage certificate can be obtained by visiting the website of the General Register Office.

Once the certificate has been obtained you will need the Department Of Foreign Affairs to attach the Apostille stamp.

You will then have a legalised copy of the marriage certificate and will need to have it translated by an official translator before use by the court. A comprehensive list of approved official translators can be downloaded from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website or simply contact Advocate Abroad for approved translators in your area.

Once the legalised copy of the marriage/birth certificates have been arranged you will then need to hand them over to the procurador for presentation to the court.

 

Gibraltar

To obtain a legalised marriage certificate if married in Gibraltar, you will need to bring your copy of the marriage certificate to the following address where you can request a legalised copy:

The Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages
Civil Status & Registration Office
Joshua Hassan House
Secretary’s Lane
Gibraltar

If you do not have a copy of your marriage certificate you can obtain one at the same address.

US

The specific procedure for obtaining a legalised certificate of marriage should be verified by checking the relevant County Recorder’s Office Website.

However the process is not very different from the process described in UK and Ireland above.

So for example, if you were married in Las Vegas, you can obtain information on how to Order a Marriage Certificate and Order An Apostille from the same website.

Of course you will need to locate the relevant website for the area in which you were married in the US to get the correct procedure.

As before, once the certified certificate has been obtained you will need to send it to an official translator. A comprehensive list of approved official translatorscan be downloaded or simply contact Advocate Abroad for approved translators in your area.

Once the legalised copy of the marriage/birth certificates have been arranged you will then need to hand them over to the procurador for presentation to the court.

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