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 Post subject: Getting Married in Russia while doing the paperwork at home.
Post Number:#1  PostPosted: 07 Mar 2011 17:44 

Joined: 05 Jan 2011
Last Visit: 04 May 2011 15:08
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I have been asked a few times for info regarding the paperwork needed to get married in Russia by Canadian's. While the Getting Married in Russia thread at is very good I think some words should be put into preparing things via long distance as well. I had read about some of the ways to prepare your paperwork while IN Russia but I decided that this was not the best way for me. There was too much running around, extra costs, or time, and I would rather spend the time right before my wedding doing anything BUT paperwork and worrying. Basically I wanted to prepare the paperwork well in advance, plan everything, and arrive and get married.

The things you need to arrange your wedding from afar are still the same...

- Copy of all the pages of your passport (translated) and your Passport with a valid visa
- A Certificate of No Impediment
- If you have been married before, then the Certificate of Divorce
- Zags marriage application

First thing I did was obtain the copies of these documents locally while at home and asked my fiancee for the Zags marriage application. It will also help if you get a translation of the application as well since you should know what you are signing.

Then you need to prepare them for Russian use. For someone living in countries that have signed The Hague Apostille Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (1961) you can use the Apostille process. For Canadian's Certificates of Apostille are Unavailable in Canada since we did not sign that treaty we have to go through another process. Instead we have an equivalent process called ‚Äúlegalization and authentication‚ÄĚ. In any case...check the Russian consulate (Or other consulate if needed) for current information regarding how to legalize Canadian documents for use in Russia.

As of today...those instructions say:
It's necessary to

1. verify it (them) at a Canadian Notary Public, ,

2. legalize the document(s) at the Department of Foreign Affairs & International Trade Canada (DFAIT). Please, enclose with it (them): a short letter addressed to DFAIT with a request to legalize it

3. Besides the document(s) mentioned above you should submit to the Consulate General of the Russian Federation a copy of the valid passport and your contact telephone numbers.

The fee for the legalization in the Consulate General of the Russian Federation of each document is 60 Canadian dollars (in money-order - ONLY).

The period of legalization is 10 business days.


It is worth to note that my marriage search document which I used to prove I had no impediment to marriage had a Government of Ontario ministry stamp on it already and therefore did not need a notary to verify it before sending to the Department of Foreign Affairs. Saves you a fee is all. I sent my Certificate of Divorce and the Marriage Search through this legalization process.

For the copy of my passport and translation I actually did that part while visiting a few months earlier in Russia. Easier and cheaper to do it there since I was already there. A few rubles and done the next day.

Signing the application form so Mila could present it without my presence 32 days ahead of the wedding date was a little tricky. I had to sign the document that was filled out in Russian in the witness of a notary and a translator. The notary was there to witness that I signed it and the translator had to confirm that I understood what I was signing for the notary. Again I did this on a previous visit to Russia.

IMPORTANT NOTE!!!*** IF you had to do these last two steps remotely you should be very careful of how you prepare them. We were told that Zags would only accept notary and translations from on Russian soil. It is possible that you could get the same work done in Canada and then have the documents legalized and authenticated but make sure with Zags.

To be careful all of the documents I prepared I scanned in and emailed to Mila so she could print them off and present them to the Zags manager to see if things were ok.

Once all this was done, I got my travel visa well in advance to make sure the spelling of my name was the same as our paperwork. Mila waited until 32 days before our chosen date and took in the paperwork and signed her side. And 30 days later I arrived for the celebrations. I found doing the paperwork ahead of time was perhaps longer, but much less stressful for me.

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