Pre-marriage registration in Finland?

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Linda Tyrol
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Pre-marriage registration in Finland?

Post by Linda Tyrol » Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:12 am

Hi all,

And thanks for your feedback on my previous post. Well, my boyfriend and I definitely Do want to get married and not for immigration reasons. We went the other day to a government office here because we were told we had to pre-register the marriage prior to going ahead with it in the States. Basically, they want to know that there is no impediment to the marriage and I need to show my birth certificate and have some document notarized(?).

The woman working at this office spoke very little English and I really don't exactly know what she is looking for. I mean, my birth certificate is somewhere in the States (yikes!) and I've never heard of this procedure. Where we are getting married (in Massachusetts) they don't require this proof of impediment -- they only take a sworn statement that you are free to get married.

For you all married folks out there -- please let me know if you had to do this when marrying a Finn -- even if the marriage took place outside the country. I'm just concerned that by the time I return to the States and find the papers, send them back here for processing, etc., it will be too late.

I appreciate your help with this.

Thanks,

Linda



Pre-marriage registration in Finland?

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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:20 am

It is basically you need to have an official(-looking) paper stating you are not married before. The birth certificate you need so they can check your parents are not his parents etc. you know the regular stuff...
Cheers, Hank W.
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Caroline
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Re: Pre-marriage registration in Finland?

Post by Caroline » Fri Nov 14, 2003 2:45 pm

Linda Tyrol wrote:Hi all,

And thanks for your feedback on my previous post. Well, my boyfriend and I definitely Do want to get married and not for immigration reasons. We went the other day to a government office here because we were told we had to pre-register the marriage prior to going ahead with it in the States. Basically, they want to know that there is no impediment to the marriage and I need to show my birth certificate and have some document notarized(?).

The woman working at this office spoke very little English and I really don't exactly know what she is looking for. I mean, my birth certificate is somewhere in the States (yikes!) and I've never heard of this procedure. Where we are getting married (in Massachusetts) they don't require this proof of impediment -- they only take a sworn statement that you are free to get married.

For you all married folks out there -- please let me know if you had to do this when marrying a Finn -- even if the marriage took place outside the country. I'm just concerned that by the time I return to the States and find the papers, send them back here for processing, etc., it will be too late.

I appreciate your help with this.

Thanks,

Linda




I'm from Massachusetts myself, but we got married here in Oulu and have lived here together the whole time, so I can't really advise on how to get married in Massachusetts from personal experience. But here's the process I dealt with when we got married in Finland:

- have to be in Finland for at least 2 weeks

- contact U.S. consulate, Helsinki, to schedule appointment to get affidavit of marriage. You have to call- they don't allow anyone in there without an appointment. I remember I was on hold for about 25 minutes when I scheduled my appointment, but you have to just be patient. And no, this is not George W's fault. It's been like that before GW took office.


- bring your passport, a wad of cash (they WILL rip you off on the exchange rate, but just think of your significant other ("darling, you are worth every penny of this"), and your fiance's vital information- name, national I.D. number, and date and place of birth.


****Your birth certificate: funny- I remember bringing mine with me (you should always have a copy of it when travelling internationally in case you lose your passport by the way), but I do not remember them actually asking to see it; they just studied the passport......so in all honesty I don't know if you'll really need it

- fill out the affidavit at the consulate...it's pretty simple.....then bring it back to the clerk, raise your right hand and swear that there is no impediment to your getting married in Finland, then they sign it and stamp it, take your money, and you're all set.


- make ceremony appointment at local magistrate (maistraatti) office at least 1 week in advance.

Now, this is for marriage in Finland. I'm not sure how much of this also applies for marriage in the States, nor do I know if you really need your birth certificate in that case.




[quote="Linda Tyrol"]I'm just concerned that by the time I return to the States and find the papers, send them back here for processing, etc., it will be too late.[quote="Linda Tyrol"]

May I ask.....too late for what? As soon as you leave Finland/Schengen region, it renews your 3-month visitor visa anyway, and you will likely have to leave Finland at least once more before you get official residency. It sounds to me like it doesn't really matter if you get married in Finland or Massachusetts- ultimately the beaurocracy and hassle will turn out to be pretty much the same :roll:
Former expat in Finland, now living in New Hampshire USA.

Remembah whea ya pahked ya cah!


Dara
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Post by Dara » Fri Nov 14, 2003 3:05 pm

Hm I think one can stay in Finland or any EU country for no longer than 3 months a time and not more than 6 months altogether in a 12 month period.. which would mean that if you have been in Finland from Jan to March and from April till June you can come back again no sooner than in 6 months... Or am I wrong?


Penny
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Post by Penny » Fri Nov 14, 2003 3:51 pm

When we got married in Australia, nearly 3 years ago, we didn't have to pre-register. I needed the signature of an Australian citizen from the Australian consulate in Helsinki to keep the Australian government happy, but all we needed for the Finns was a clearance for my husband from his church. We registered the marriage in Finland after we were married, and had no problems.
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eashton
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Post by eashton » Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:49 pm

Jarkko and I were both living in Boston when we got married but this would be the first I've heard of a pre-registration request. Of course, we went to Vegas to get married on our way to a conference we go to every year which was fast, cheap and hilarious in its own special way so I don't know if MA has anything to do with this. Jarkko registered the marriage with the consulate a while after that and I don't know that anything else was ever mentioned about the marriage itself during the visa application process.


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Tue Nov 18, 2003 3:30 pm

My husband , Timo, and I were faced with the fact that both had family on 2 continents when deciding if we were to marry in Helsinki or TX. We eventually decided to marry in Finland.

In TX, if my memory serves me,there would have only been a few day wait to process the license and both would have been required to sign a paper stating each was free to marry.

In Helsinki, we faced alot of paperwork.My birth certificate was acceptable with the Seal imprinted on it from the state of NY.I copied my passport and had that notarized. ( Make sure it is with an International Seal or the aurthorities here in Finland will not accept it). I had been divorced previously and that is where we ran into problems. Each paper of the divorce decree had to be notarized as well and submitted to an office in Helsinki. ( again with an international seal)

THEN, I received a letter asking for proof I has NOT remarried. Sure, I had income tax statements showing I was single and so forth but that wasnt acceptable. Eventually, I was more or less rescued bya NY State official ( who happened to be my former 8th grade teacher! ) He signed documents attesting to both who he was/is and that I was free to marry.

As far as having to pre register your intent to marry in Finland, Ive never heard of that requirement unless it is something recently added.

Ill ask Timo when he gets in from work. Perhaps he knows...

Good luck!

Trish Pääkkönen
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TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Tue Nov 18, 2003 3:41 pm

I did forget to mention ONE problem I encountered stateside:

Soon after returning to Texas, I went to the local Dept of Public Safety to change my driver´s license information.I had copies of the marriage certificate both in Finnish and in English...and of course, with the proper International seal attached. I was told by a young woman that she had never even heard of Finland and thus the marriage was invalid!!!

She suggested Timo and I remarry in TX as soon as possible within 30 days or I would have to refill out all paperwork!!

After phone calls to the head of DPS in Austin and threats of contacting the local media, they relented and I was issued a license.

Trish Pääkkönen, formerly of Galveston, TX ......now of resident of Finland, wherever that is:)


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MPballet
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Post by MPballet » Thu Dec 04, 2003 7:23 pm

Wow, this topic has is just the information I need!
I will be getting married in Massachusetts, but I
have played with the idea of getting married in
Finland but couldn't get much info..so thanks caroline!

When you say have to be in Finland 2 weeks, is that
2 weeks before you get married, or just 2 weeks
whenever?

I will be in finland for christmas and I just wish I
could *boom* get married while there. well, not so
cause of all that paperworks and stuff.
You're not crazy, you're going sane in a crazy world


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