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Why the Registration of Marriage in Ukraine is Better Than in...

Why the Registration of Marriage in Ukraine is Better Than in...

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Everything is quite simple. Marriage registration between foreigners in Ukraine is a legal, easy, fast and fairly cheap procedure.

The accent. This "legal advice" is more useful for those couples, in which both are foreigners and both do not intend to obtain a residence permit or citizenship in Ukraine as a result of such a marriage.

The reasons. In practice, more and more foreigners are registering marriage in Ukraine for very noble reasons, for example, with the goal of adopting a child in Ukraine.

According to the provisions of Articles 211, 212 of the Family Code of Ukraine, a capable person must be at least twenty-one years old to become the adopter of a child, except when the adopter is a relative of the child. A foreigner must be married to become the adopter of a child, except when the foreigner is a relative of the child.

Another fairly common reason is the intention of the couple to use the services of surrogate motherhood after having their marriage registered. Although, only few are aware that in Ukraine, unlike in many other countries, in particular, Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, India, the surrogate motherhood is allowed. And, in view of that, the Ukrainian market for assisted reproductive technology is highly developed.

As stipulated in Article 123 of the Family Code of Ukraine, the spouses, who conceived a child with the help of assisted reproductive technologies, are the parents of that child, not the woman, who became a surrogate mother.

Also, the reason for the marriage registration in Ukraine is a banal desire to avoid various restrictions, for example, age-related requirements, lengthy procedures for collecting documents and obtaining official permits, as well as the need to observe special conditions for marriage in the jurisdictions of the future spouses’ place of residence.

The situation in other countries. In order to officially register the marriage of a couple, in which one or both are non-residents of the country of marriage registration, for example, in France, you should first live in the country for at least three months and, then, face very undemocratic prices for wedding services. In a number of countries, for example, Germany, Great Britain, you need to obtain a "bride / groom" visa, having waited for it approximately 2-6 months (one should bear in mind the probability of not obtaining such a visa), and to speak the state language. 

As for the marriage registration procedure in the CIS countries, its efficiency also leaves much to be desired, since the marriage registration takes place, as a rule, not earlier than one month after the submission of the appropriate application by the couple to the state bodies.

Furthermore, to register a marriage in Spain, you should have a bank account and real estate in this country. I will not even mention the countries, whose legal system is based on Sharia law, where the traditions of marriage and the preceding rites have their own specific characteristics.

The choice is yours, but in this case, Ukraine is a good choice.

The rights of foreigners and stateless persons in Ukraine. Foreigners and stateless persons have the same rights and freedoms as nationals of Ukraine have, unless otherwise provided by the Constitution, laws of Ukraine, as well as international treaties, to which Ukraine is a party, as stated in Article 2 of the Law of Ukraine "On the legal status of foreigners and stateless persons". Article 18 of this law establishes that foreigners and stateless persons have equal rights and obligations with nationals of Ukraine in marriage and family relations.

The conditions, the observance of which is necessary for the registration of marriage in Ukraine. According to the general provisions of the Family Code of Ukraine, the marriage age in Ukraine for women and men is set at 18 years. Upon the request of a person, who has reached the age of 16, he/she may be granted the right to marry, if it is determined that such a marriage meets his/her interests. Other conditions that must be met for state registration of a marriage are 1) monogamy, that is, a woman and a man have the right to remarry only after having terminated their previous marriages; 2) persons, who are relatives of a direct line of kinship, siblings, cousins, aunt, uncle and nephew, niece, adoptive parent and adopted child cannot be married to each other. Generally speaking, these are the all conditions.

The procedure for registration of marriage in Ukraine. In order to register a marriage in Ukraine, a woman and a man must submit an application to any state registration authority of their choice or to another institution that provides public services.

The couple should additionally provide the following documents, certified in the prescribed manner and translated into Ukrainian: the first page of the passport; the document confirming the dissolution of the previous marriage (if any). In this case, a copy of the above documents certified by a Ukrainian notary shall be deemed as documents, certified in the prescribed manner, except when legalization (apostilization) of a foreign document is required (for nationals of countries, which are not parties to the Minsk Convention on Legal Assistance and Legal Relations in Civil, Family and Criminal cases of 1993 or to the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents of 1961).

After the authorized body accepts the documents, they are transferred to the migration service to check the legality of the foreigner’s stay on the territory of Ukraine. The duration of such a verification is on average 5 working days, and sometimes even less. Upon obtaining the results of the verification, the marriage may be registered and, then, attested by a marriage certificate.

Thus, you do not have to live in Ukraine for a certain period of time before you may apply for registration of marriage, there is no need to obtain visas, other official permits or to have real estate in Ukraine and so on.

The registration procedure, including the preparation and submission of documents, the migration verification and marriage registration, may take you about 10 working days. And in this, you will encounter no high costs, no bureaucratic system or paperwork.

By Daryna Demchuk, Associate Integrites

Integrites at a Glance

INTEGRITES is a full-service law firm with the head office in Ukraine, offices in Kazakhstan and Russia, and representative offices in Germany, the Netherlands, and the UK.

We provide legal services to companies seeking comprehensive advice on large deals and major disputes, as well as day-to-day operation. INTEGRITES is highly recommended for its cross-border work (whether sophisticated transactions or complex dispute resolution) and for the projects in energy, in particular, renewable.

Our mission is to help companies concentrate on development of their business while we take care of the legal issues. With profound industry-focused expertise, we deliver legal solutions that add value to the business of our clients and help them successfully handle legal challenges.

In 14 years INTEGRITES has served more than 850 clients from around the globe, including Fortune 500 companies and international financial institutions. Clients in our portfolio are recognized leaders in various industries: from manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and retail to agriculture, logistics, and renewables. Currently 80% of the companies we serve are international.

INTEGRITES has been consistently recognized by the leading international legal directories and rankings: Chambers Global/Europe, The Legal 500 EMEA, Who’s Who Legal, IFLR 1000, Best Lawyers, FT Innovative Lawyers.

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Firm's website: www.integrites.com