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Getting married in Poland
A. Getting married at the Civil Registry Office – Polish USC (Urząd Stanu Cywilnego)
To get married at the USC you need to produce the following documents and submit them in the office:
1. ID proof of the persons intending to get married, ID proof should be with photographs; in case of Indians the best document is your passport. For Polish citizens – dowód osobisty, passport, etc.
2. Copies of birth certificates of the persons intending to get married. If a copy is in a foreign language, a sworn translation will be required as well. This can be done in Poland –
- from Hindi to Polish (data as of March 19, 2019):
- from English to Polish – pick one from the list available at: https://bip.ms.gov.pl/pl/rejestry-i-ewidencje/tlumacze-przysiegli/lista-tlumaczy-przysieglych/search.html
or abroad by the Polish consul.
NOTE: For Indians who don’t have birth certificate – the Indian Embassy in Warsaw will issue a birth certificate as per entries in your Indian passport. Before submission to the USC, this will need to be translated to Polish. Please refer to: https://www.indianembassywarsaw.gov.in/eoi.php?id=Misc
3. If any of the persons have been previously married, they need to submit documents certifying their current civil status and full capacity to get married:
a) In the case of divorce: An abridged copy of the marriage certificate with an entry on divorce or a copy of the final court divorce decree. If the divorce occurred abroad, you must submit the original copy of the judgment (decree) translated to Polish by a sworn translator from the list available at the link given above.
b) In the case of annulment: An abridged copy of the marriage certificate with an entry on annulment, or a copy of the final annulment decree of the court (translated – see above)
c) In the case of death of a spouse: An abridged copy of the death certificate of the spouse (translated – see above).
4. Foreigners wishing to get married in Poland need to submit a document certifying they are free to marry, issued in their country of origin, along with a sworn translation into the Polish language. The government of India issues such certification called as Bachelorhood/Single Status Certificate. Please see this link for more details. The Embassy of India in Poland also does not issue such certificate. To fulfill this requirement, a citizen of India should submit a Polish court judgment relieving him/her of this obligation. You need to go to Sąd Rejonowy (District Court) having jurisdiction over the area you reside, to Wydział Rodzinny i Nieletnich (Family and Juvenile Division). You will obtain such relief in non-litigious proceedings. You will have to submit an application to the District Court, requesting an exemption from the obligation to submit said document to the USC. In the application indicate that you cannot obtain the document in India.
NOTE: After submission of the set of required documents, you will sign declaration on the names of the spouses and their children after the wedding.
A marriage cannot be concluded at the USC before one month passes from the date of submission of the documents, but in justified cases, you can apply to shorten that period.
On the wedding day, two adult witnesses must be present. A foreigner can also act as witness, but he/she should know Polish (if he doesn’t, a sworn interpreter may be required). The witness must show a valid identity document on the day of the ceremony.
Foreigner intended to marry who does not speak Polish needs to complete all the formalities (including the ceremony itself) accompanied by a sworn interpreter of a language they speak fluently.
The civil ceremony takes place in the Civil Registry Office. In appropriate cases, the Director of the USC may agree to conclude a marriage outside the Civil Registry Office premises. Concordat marriages take place in a selected place of worship.
A marriage certificate for marriages concluded at the Civil Registry Office is drawn up immediately after the ceremony.
For both civil marriages and concordat marriages a stamp duty is charged for the preparation of the marriage certificate. After the ceremony and completion of the certificate at the USC, the spouses receive a copy of the marriage certificate.
B. Concordat marriage – religious marriage which is registered in office as well
The persons who want to get married in this manner must submit in the church:
1. the documents required by the church (such as a baptism certificate, a certificate of completion of premarital education classes, etc.),
2. the certificate from the Civil Registry Office. To obtain such a certificate, the couple should go to the Civil Registry Office, declare that they want to have a concordat marriage and submit the documents mentioned above (for marriage in USC).
If one of the person who wants to get married is not Christian, there are two ways to get married in church:
1. for the non-Christian to get baptized, which will make him/her eligible to get married in church,
2. if the non-Christian does not wish to be baptized, the Christian person will need to obtain dispensation (dyspensa biskupia) from the bishop.
For both of the above cases, please discuss the details with the parish priest, who will assist you.
After concordat marriage, abridged copies of the marriage certificate can be obtained at the USC usually within 2 weeks of the date of the ceremony upon presentation of an identity proof.
The following religious organizations have no right to perform concordat marriage, so it will mean that even after religious marriage, you need to get married in USC in order to be legally married: 1. The Muslim Religious Union, 2. The Karaim Religious Union, 3. The Old-Rite Eastern Church.
Source of information: www.migrant.info.pl