Marrying a Foreigner in France: Key Procedures

Épouser un étranger en France : Les démarches clés

Getting married is a unique moment in life, but when your significant other is of foreign nationality, it can add a bit of administrative complexity. If you’re considering marrying a foreigner in France, here are the essential steps to be aware of.

  1. Publication of Banns: The first step is to publish the banns at the town hall of the place of residence of one of the future spouses. If the foreigner resides abroad, the banns must also be published in their country of origin.
  2. Marriage File: Before tying the knot, it is essential to assemble a marriage file. This must include proof of identity, proof of residence, information about witnesses, and, for the foreign spouse, a certificate of customary law and a certificate of celibacy.
  3. Translation of Documents: All documents written in a foreign language must be translated into French by a sworn translator. This step is crucial to ensure the authenticity and understanding of the documents.
  4. Preliminary Interview: Once your file is complete, the town hall will set a date for a preliminary interview. This is a crucial step to ensure the sincerity of matrimonial intentions.
  5. Civil Marriage: In France, civil marriage is mandatory before any religious ceremony. It takes place at the town hall in the presence of a civil registrar. During the civil ceremony, if one of the spouses does not speak French, the presence of a sworn interpreter is mandatory to ensure a proper understanding of the procedure.

In conclusion, marrying a foreigner in France requires following specific procedures and arranging for certified translations and interpretations. It is advisable to gather information in advance and allocate sufficient time for all formalities.



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