Foreigners Marrying in Turkey
Turkey offers so many idyllic locations for wedding ceremonies such as beaches, mountains, resorts and wonderful cities and couples can start their honeymoons immediately not losing any of their valuable holiday time. The Turkish Marriage Legislation and Regulations state a Turkish national and a foreigner, or two foreigners with different nationalities or with the same nationality can be married in Turkey and this has to be carried out by someone authorised and regulated under Turkish Civil Code. Those of the same nationality can arrange a marriage in their Embassy or Consulate, or weddings can take place in the Turkish Marriage Offices run by the local municipalities. Religious weddings are not recognised in Turkey and civil weddings must take place. Foreigners and nationals must provide marriage licences to marry in Turkey which are issued by the proper Civil Status Register in his or her own country to prove that they are not already married and without these weddings cannot take place.
Conditions for a valid marriage in Turkey
Capacity to marryOnly those persons who have sufficient mental capacity to make fair judgements are allowed to marry. Mental illness is therefore a bar to marriage. In addition a person must have reached the age of 18 to marry.
Absence of consanguinityMarriage between close relatives is prohibited.
Already existing marriageMonogamy is one of the essential principles of Turkish family law. A second marriage cannot be entered into before the first one is terminated.
Waiting periodMarried women whose marriage has been dissolved cannot marry before the expiration of 300 days or nine months from the date of dissolution. The divorce decree may also state a waiting period within which the spouse may not marry.
SicknessCertain sicknesses such as epilepsy, hysteria etc., constitute a bar to marriage.
Marrying in Turkey and the Necessary Documentation Requirements
Petition of the marriageTo start an action the groom and bride must file a petition of the marriage in person at the Municipality (Belediye) called the “Evlenme Beyannamesi” in Turkish.
Passport and birth certificateThese have to be translated in Turkish by the relevant authorities which can be the Turkish Embassy in your country of origin or certified by a notary in Turkey.
Health CertificateThis has to be taken from a State medical institution in Turkey called the “Saglik Ocagi” or “Devlet Hastanesi” in the Turkish language. Any reports to be issued by private hospitals or clinics are not acceptable.
PhotographsSix passport size photos of both the groom and bride are required.
Certificate of Capacity to Marry (Certificate of Celibacy)This sates if a person is single, divorced or widowed and is issued by the Civil Status Registrar of his or her country. If the certificate is issued in the country of origin it then has to be certified by the Turkish Embassy or Consulate or an Apostille. It also has to be translated and notarised in Turkish otherwise it is not valid. The certificate can also be issued by the foreigner’s particular consulate in Istanbul which is then certified by the Governor of Istanbul ( Istanbul Valiligi) who is located in the Cagaloglu area or if it has been issued by the foreigner’s particular Embassy in Ankara then it has to be certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Turkish Republic in Ankara.
Accommodation DocumentIf both partners are foreigners than a letter should be written by the hotel they are staying in stating they are guests there, the length of their stay and date of their departure.
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