German law does not require the registration of a marriage concluded abroad of a German national with a German authority. However if you would like to obtain a German marriage certificate, you can file an application to register the marriage in the German marriage register.
Only the spouses can apply for a marriage registration. If you wish to change your name after the marriage (name declaration), both spouses have to sign the application. If a name declaration is not required, the marriage registration can be made by either of the spouses alone.
The explanations above apply for civil partnerships, too.
You need to book an appointment on our website for a marriage registration/name declaration to submit the application and documents. Please read the general information about naming law and the procedure on our website before booking an appointment.
If you would like to submit your name declaration with one of our Honorary Consuls, please contact us beforehand:
The following documents are required as originals and one photocopy each:
- Completed form (please write in capital letters in German and do not sign the form yet) which can be downloaded below (available in German only)
- Marriage certificate or civil partnership certificate
- Valid passports for both spouses/civil partners (or German identity card/Personalausweis)
- Naturalisation certificate for naturalised German nationals or „Staatsangehörigkeitsausweis“ (if applicable)
- Birth certificates of both spouses/civil partners
- If applicable: Proof of a married name (Bescheinigung über die Namensführung in der Ehe issued by a German registrar’s office)
- If applicable: certificates of all previous marriages/civil partnerships
- Divorce decree absolute for divorcees
- Proof of residence in the UK (for example council tax bill or utility bill)
- German deregistration certificate (Abmeldebescheinigung) from your last German place of residence or current registration certificate (Meldebescheinigung) from your most recent address in Germany
- Translations of foreign documents (usually not required for English or “international” documents, for example international birth certificates)
- Birth certificates (“full” version – stating the parents) for all children the spouses/civil partners have together. If the children were born in the UK, please bring along the first birth certificates, not a re-registration.
Depending on the case more documents can become necessary or may subsequently be requested by the relevant register office (Standesamt) in Germany. Some register offices will also ask for German translations of documents in English or Apostilles on foreign documents. You will be informed by email later on in the process if this will be necessary in your case.
Your application will then be forwarded to the competent register office (Standesamt) in Germany, where it will be processed. The register office in Germany will charge a fee for initiating the procedure and issuing the marriage certificate. The fee amounts to about 80 – 120 Euros. You will have to pay the fee directly to the register office in Germany (you will receive an email regarding the fees or an invoice during the process).
Please note that the German Missions in the United Kingdom cannot predict how long this process will take. The processing times may vary considerably depending on the complexity of the case and the individual register office and might take several months up to 3 years (if you have never lived in Germany).