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Destination Weddings Marriage License Laws & Requirements

Validity of Marriages Abroad

In general, unless the marriage breaks U.S. state laws, marriages which are legally performed and valid abroad are also legally valid in the United States. Inquiries regarding the validity of a marriage abroad should be directed to the attorney general of the state in the United States where the parties to the marriage live.

U.S. embassy and consulate personnel cannot perform marriages in foreign countries. Depending on the law of the foreign country, local civil or religious officials generally perform marriages.  Marriages performed overseas are considered valid in the country where they take place if they are entered into in accordance with local law.  Recognition of the validity of marriages performed abroad is dependent upon the laws of the place in which the marriage is to be recognized.

Plan ahead.  Procedures vary from country to country, and some require lengthy preparation.

  • Many countries have requirements that the parties have been resident in that country for a specified period of time before a marriage may be performed there.
  • There may be requirements for blood tests, etc.
  • There may be requirements for the minimum age of the parties who are being married.
  • There may be requirements for parental consent.
  • There is also, in many countries, a requirement that documents certifying the end of any previous relationships (such as death or divorce certificates) be submitted, translated into the local language, and authenticated.
  • Affidavit of Eligibility to Marry:  Some countries require an affidavit by the parties as proof of legal capacity to enter into a marriage contract.  No such government-issued document exists in the United States.  You may execute such an affidavit at a U.S. embassy or consulate.  The U.S. embassy or consulate cannot attest to your marital status; however, most countries will accept a statement from you regarding your ability to marry if your signature on the affidavit has been notarized by a U.S. consular officer.


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Plan Your Destination Wedding Today!

Planning a Destination Weddings in Aruba, Jamaica, Punta Cana, Hawaii, Fuji, Mexico, Dominican Republic, St. Thomas, Virgin Island, Bahamas, Costa Rica, or any Caribbean Island, let a Travel Agent help you with your plans and budget. We offer monthly payment plans for the guest of your wedding, symbolic ceremony or wedding vow renewals. We offer a FREE Honeymoon website. Let your wedding guest give you a gift of money toward the cost of your honeymoon. Go to to register.



GetAway Vacations LLC makes every effort to keep the laws, travel and resort information up to date on this our websites, however, laws, resorts, and wedding package offerings can change, so we cannot guarantee that all information on any particular resort, law, or destination are completely accurate at the time of viewing. Before making any marriage decisions on a particular destination and travel plans, we highly recommend you fill out the "plan a destination wedding" form.


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