How to Get Married to Someone in Another Country

March 24, 2023
5 min

The COVID era has seen a rise in the use of virtual communication, which may be especially important for committed couples who live far apart. Long-distance couples can overcome the distance and establish meaningful connections thanks to the multitude of video conferencing options that are easily available. In fact, even if the couple is located on different ends of the world, it is totally possible to perform an online wedding ceremony.

Can You Get Married Online to Someone in Another Country?

You have the option to tie the knot virtually with someone from nearly any nation, but it's crucial to review the legal requirements if your future spouse holds citizenship in another country. The determinating factor is whether your country of origin recognizes and approves of the virtual marriage, which is typically the case for most nations. As long as the ceremony is performed legally in one country, it's probable that other countries will also recognize the marriage as legal.

Although online marriage might not be a common occurrence in some areas, a virtual wedding conducted in a country that recognizes it legally is legitimate. Since the nuptials take place in a digital environment, they can transpire in any jurisdiction where virtual weddings are permissible.

If you or your partner reside in a nation that is a member of the Hague Convention, you can almost certainly conduct your wedding online. All you need is an Apostille stamp on your marriage certificate.

Couple getting married online via Zoom with an officiant

5 Essential Steps to make your global online wedding a reality

Planning a wedding can be hard, especially a traditional one.  With the advances of online platforms, you can opt to have an online wedding instead at a fraction of the cost and a lot less headaches.  Because everything is done virtually, the couple doesn't even need to be in the same country to participate in an online wedding. You are able to invite anybody all around the world to attend your big day, so those who would no otherwise be able to attend in person can at least witness your ceremony digitally. Here are the steps to making your global online wedding a reality and see it come into fruition.

1. Hire an Online Marriage Officiant

The first step is to engage a legal officiant who can conduct your wedding ceremony online. You can hire an online marriage officiant from any U.S. state that permits virtual weddings. The officiant will have the authority to marry you and your partner in accordance with the laws of the state in which they are licensed. Once you and your spouse fill out the necessary paperwork, Courtly will bear the brunt of the work of booking an officiant at a time that works well for the couple.

2. Obtain a Legal Marriage License

To be legally married, you must obtain a marriage license, which is true for both offline and online weddings. You and your partner will need to complete forms and provide the court with key personal data, including proof of identification, age eligibility, and marital status. If you're both U.S. citizens, you'll also need to provide your Social Security numbers.

Courtly will also take care of filing and getting you your marriage license. As part of our base package, the government fees and paperwork will be taken care of, for you. We only need basic information, a selfie and a window of when you want your ceremony to occur for us to proceed with finalizing everything for your ceremony. Most couples can get legally married within 48 hours after signing up!

3. Choose a Video Streaming Platform

You can sit back and relax until the agreed upon date for your ceremony. Courtly will facilitate all the hard work and will dot all the "i's" and cross all the "t's" for you. All you would need to do is invite your friends and family to join. You can invite as many as 100 people to your personalized Zoom call to attend your ceremony. If you cannot provide witnesses or don't want to invite any friends and family to your meeting, Courtly can provide 2 witnesses for you, for a small fee of USD 50. 

4. Conduct the Online Wedding Ceremony

You'll need to ensure that both parties have reliable access to a strong internet connection, and timing can be tricky due to different time zones. However, you can record the ceremony for those who can't attend in real-time. After payment is received and the marriage license has been issued, you must attend your ceremony with a form of I.D. to validate your identity, and the officiant can personalize your wedding for whether you would like to profess your own vows or exchange rings.  Most couples are married in less than 15 minutes after the start of the ceremony.

5. Obtain Your Marriage Certificate

Finally, after completing the online wedding ceremony, you'll need to obtain your official marriage certificate. Your wedding officiant will submit the necessary information to a local court or county's marriage office, and you'll receive your marriage certificate via mail. If you're marrying someone in another country, you may need to attach an apostille stamp to your marriage certificate to authenticate it.

The marriage certificate will be snail mailed to your preferred location but while you wait for the physical copy to arrive in the mail, you can access a digital copy of your certificate 24 hours after your ceremony, under your Courtly file.

Final Thoughts

One reason online weddings are more accessible today is due to advancements in technology, allowing for better internet connectivity and communication tools which enable couples to organize and conduct their wedding ceremonies remotely. Furthermore, the global COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult or impossible for couples to physically travel to each other's countries for a traditional wedding so online weddings provide a safe and feasible alternative. Online weddings can also be more affordable as couples can avoid the high costs associated with planning a traditional wedding, such as venue rental, catering, and decor expenses. 

With these tools discussed, you are able to marry anyone you'd like all around the world, as the Courtly platform is able to provide a wedding certificate that's accepted all around the USA. With the addition of an apostille stamp, you are also able to obtain a legal marriage accepted by those countries that are members of the Hague convention. Courtly also recognizes same-sex marriages and helps our armed forces and military marry anyone they want to even if they are still deployed. From all of this, it is clear to see that there shouldn't be anything getting in the way of you getting married legally, even if it is done virtually. 

Let us handle the paperwork.

Getting married is complicated. Courtly simplifies the process and provides everything necessary to get married online, including providing a licensed officiant who can perform a remote ceremony.

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