If you choose to get married in Russia, then you will need to ensure not only that you have the correct documents, but that they are also properly translated and have the appropriate seals and certification for use by a foreign registry office.
The process of obtaining the translations in the necessary legal format can appear complex and confusing, but don’t worry, Real Russia offer you a complete “one-stop” service to ensure that everything goes smoothly, you get the documents you need, translated, legalised and ready for use allowing you to concentrate on your wedding plans!
You should always check with the office where you will be registered in Russia to see if they have any local Rules, but typically you will need to provide the following:
Note that we will need your original or certified copies of the documents, photo copies or faxed copies are not acceptable for the Notary and also the Apostilles will be attached to the back of each document legalising them for use in Russia.
The Russian registry office (ZAGS) will only accept the Certificate of No Impediment for a period of up to 90 days from the date of issue so please ensure that you plan your dates of travel, document issue and translation appropriately.
Remember, before you can get married, you will also need to register your visa.
Rather than charge by the word, type of document, the solicitor used or any of the other confusing formulas used by others, as usual Real Russia provide a simple, understandable, low cost rate based on the number of documents.
|Service type*||First document||Second document||Third and subsequent documents||Processing time|
|Economy service||£160.00||£130.00||£120.00||12 days|
|Standard service||£180.00||£150.00||£130.00||10 days|
|Express service||£212.50||£182.50||£182.50||7 days|
The processing time is the maximum number of working days which exclude weekends, UK and Russian public holidays. The day of receipt does not count as a processing day.
These prices do not include any special Public Notary stamps required by ZAGS No. 4 (please see below).
The cost includes:
* Please note, those clients who are getting married at ZAGS No. 4 in Moscow will need to pay an extra £110 per document required to be notarised. This usually applies to the passport and application for marriage document, and indeed any document not signed by an official person acting in their legal capacity. This is due to the fact that the notarisation required by ZAGS Number 4 needs to be carried out by a public notary, not a solicitor as is usually the case at other ZAGS. You will need to inform us when making your application if you intend to get married at ZAGS No. 4 in Moscow. Always enquire about local requirements when approaching the ZAGS to make a booking for a wedding date. Please contact us for advice if you are in doubt.
The processing time is the number of business days that it will take us to prepare your documents and return them to you. This does not include the day of receipt, postage time back to you and excludes weekends and public holidays.
Simply download the application form from the link below, complete it and send it to us along with your original documents and payment to:
Real Russia Limited
You can pay online by clicking here or pay by post with your application by cheque or postal order. Cheques or postal orders should be made payable to “Real Russia Limited”.
As you will be sending your original documents, we strongly recommend that you use a secure postal service such as Royal Mail Special Delivery.
Please note that we strongly recommend that:
If you request us to process your marriage documents before you receive your visa or you do not provide your fiances name and address in Cyrillic text then, while we will use best translation practice and a separate translator will double check the documents, we can not be held responsible for any transliteration inconsistencies that may occur.
First, you will need to pay the registration fee for the wedding, either direct at the registry office, or more often at the government bank (Sberbank) and get a receipt to prove you have paid. If you are paying at the bank you will need to get the account details to pay to into from the registry office. Don’t try and call from the UK, even if you do speak Russian you will find that almost certainly they will not give this information out over the phone and instead will give the universal answer of all Russian government departments, “come to us in person and we will tell you everything”.
Once you have your receipt for payment, this and the rest of the documents should be presented to the registry office in Russia that you intend to marry at, you don’t both have to go, just one of the couple is OK. If the registry inspector is satisfied with the presented documents they will give you an application form to complete, this is pretty simple though as it is all in Russian it is better if you get someone you trust (your future spouse?) to complete on your behalf and then all you need to do is sign it.
Once you hand over the completed application form, assuming all is correct, you will be given a date for your wedding. As in the UK there is a waiting period (currently 31 days) before you can get married and also you should be married within 30 days of the waiting period ending. So, your date should be between 32 and 60 days after you make the application.
Quite often, this would mean a second trip back which for many may be inconvenient, not to mention expensive. In this case you can appeal to the registry office director showing your visa expiry date, return tickets and mention that you will not be able to make it back during the 32/60 day window. In almost all situations that we have heard of the director will grant a date before the 32 day minimum period allowing you to get married during your trip, though please be aware that this is at their discretion. We have had one or two reports (especially from Omsk) that $100 is required to change hands to get this early date, though this is (currently) pretty rare.
Now you have your date you can go and get married — don’t forget the ring! The registry office service will be in Russian, just make sure that you have the appropriate prompt and say “Da” and “Niet” at the right times and once it is done, which can be any where between 15 minutes and 1 hour depending upon what you have requested, you will be given your marriage certificate.
Unfortunately not, while you can go to a Church in Russia to get married, they will only be able to issue you with a Church certificate of marriage and not a legal marriage certificate. So, if you choose to get married in Russia and want a Church wedding (which I can recommend), then you will also need to have the “official” service at the registry office to get your marriage certificate.
If you live overseas and your certificate of non-impediment was not issued in the UK, for example it was issued by the consulate in Moscow or by a British consulate in a third country, then an additional step is required before you can present your documents at the ZAGS in Russia.
You must have the CNI legalised at the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow at the following address:
12, 1st Neopalimovskiy Pereulok
Tel: +7 (499) 244 37 97
Nearest metro station are Smolenskaya or Park Kultury Monday.
The legalisation office is only open on Thursday from 09.30 to 12.30 and 14.30 to 17.00, and on Friday from 09.30 to 12.30 and from 14.30 to 16.00.
This process normally takes five (5) working days and it is important to note that the documents may be lodged and collected by the applicant in person, no agencies or third parties may do this on their behalf.
To get married in Russia, you need to prove to the authorities you are who you say you are, and that you are free to marry.
To do this you provide your passport (to show who you are), a certificate of non-impediment and if necessary your divorce certificate (to show you are free to marry). The certificate of non-impediment is available from your local registry office and takes a little over 21 days to obtain, please contact them and they will be happy to provide you with advise on how to obtain it.
Obviously these documents need to be translated correctly, accurately and completely so that the officials in Russia may understand them.
However, a simple translation of these documents on its own is not enough. A Russian registrar has no knowledge of UK passports or other UK government certificates, and this is where the Apostille comes in.
Basically an Apostille, which is issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London, is an internationally recognised method provided by the 1961 Hague Convention to allow official documents or documents that have been notarised by a solicitor or Notary Public in one country to be accepted in another.
So, this is how it works:
OK, so now we have our certified translations that have been notarised to say that they are true and accurate and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office have provided the Apostile that allows the documents to be accepted in Russia. There is however one more step …
You should remember, that a Russian registry office will only accept the certified documents for a period of up to 3 months from the date of issue including the Certificate of No Impediment, so please ensure that you plan your dates of travel, document issue and translation appropriately. Further, please check with the registry office that you intend to use if they have any variation on this general rule.
At each step of the way we personally deliver and collect your documents and ensure that each process has been carried out correctly, we do not pop things in the post and hope for the best! The day your documents are ready we return them to you either by Royal Mail Special Delivery or by any other method you choose.
While we have tried to make this explanation as complete as possible to allow you to choose Real Russia to manage this process on your behalf, if you have any questions or require further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to help or look through our forum for questions and answers from others.