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Application for exemption from the presentation of the certificate of marital capacity for foreign nationals

If you want to marry in Germany as a foreign citizen or as a foreign citizen, the requirements for marriage are determined by the law that applies in your home country.

This regulation is intended to prevent the marriage from being recognized in Germany, but not in your home country. Especially for future children, it is of great importance that a marriage concluded in Germany is also recognized in the country of origin of the foreign parent.

Therefore, you must always present a certificate of marital capacity from your home country. With this certificate of marital capacity, the competent authority of your home country confirms that there is no obstacle to marriage under the law of the home country.

If you have more than one nationality, the law of the country with which you are most closely associated shall apply. If you also have German citizenship, this will take precedence.

In individual cases, you can apply for an exemption from the obligation to present a certificate of marital capacity. This is done by the President of the competent Higher Regional Court in whose district you have registered the marriage.

This is an option for you if you belong to one of the following groups of people:

  • Nationals of countries whose authorities do not issue certificates of marital capacity.
  • Nationals of States which issue certificates of marital capacity if this is objectively impossible. This applies, among other things, to situations in which foreign law refuses to marry for reasons that are incompatible with the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of marriage, for example if foreign home law prohibits remarrying after a divorce.

They do not need a certificate of marital capacity or exemption if they belong to the following group of persons:

  • Recognised persons entitled to asylum,
  • foreign refugees,
  • homeless foreigners as well as
  • Stateless persons with permanent residence in Germany.

Your status must be proven by an appropriate travel document.

If you apply for an exemption from the certificate of marital capacity, the President of the Higher Regional Court checks instead of the foreign authority whether there is an obstacle to marriage under the law of the homeland or whether there is no prerequisite for marriage. There may also be no impediment to marriage under German law. Under certain circumstances, it may have to be examined whether any pre-marriages are effectively dissolved in this context.

The exemption is valid for a period of 6 months.

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)

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