Any person–local or foreigner–who has decided to get married in the Philippines is required to submit specific requirements.
How to Get Married in the Philippines with a US Citizen.
In the case of U.S. citizens, a marriage license will not be issued unless you already secured a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry.
According to the US Embassy in the Philippines, this document “affirms that there are no legal impediments to the foreigner marrying a Filipino.”
However, the U.S. Consular Officers are prohibited by law to make any official certification about your eligibility to marry a person in the Philippines. What they can only provide is an Affidavit In Lieu of Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry.
You can get the Affidavit In Lieu of Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry either from the U.S. Embassy in Manila (by appointment only) or U.S. Consular Agency in Cebu which accepts walk-in applications on a first come/first served basis from 8:30 to 10:30 A.M.
The Consular Agency in Cebu is open every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 8:00 to 10:30 A.M. Their office is located at the Ground Floor of the Waterfront Hotel in Lahug with contact number (032) 231-1261.
Personal appearance is required but you don’t need to bring your fiance/fiancee with you.
To book an appointment for a Legal Capacity to Marry, here are the following steps:
- Book an appointment through this website. Select “Request notarial and other services not listed above.” Print the confirmation of your appointment.
- During your appointment, don’t forget to bring your confirmation printout together with your U.S. passport. Other requirements include death certificates and divorce decrees that show you are free to marry. Also, bring $50 (or the Philippine peso equivalent) or credit card. No need for your fiance/fiancee to appear.
Note: U.S. military personnel should directly contact their personnel office for a list of additional requirements.
Once you have obtained the Affidavit in Lieu of a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry, you can now apply for a marriage license at the local civil registrar of a city or municipality where either of you habitually resides.
After that, you and your partner can already marry in a church or civil wedding.
How to Get Married in the Philippines with Other Foreigners.
If you’re a Filipino who is planning to marry a foreigner, take note that there are basic documentary requirements that you need to obtain.
a. Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry issued by the respective embassy here in the Philippines. Although it may vary depending on your foreign spouse’s country of origin, here are the following basic requirements for the Certificate of Legal Capacity to Marry:
- Certificate of No Impediment (CNI) to be issued after booking an appointment and taking an oath in the embassy.
- Original copy or certified true copy of birth certificate.
- Original copy or certified true copy of divorce decree absolute or death certificate of deceased spouse, if applicable.
- A Moral Character Reference, which takes the form of a letter or certificate from a person of authority, a social worker, health or education officer, or a church minister who has direct personal knowledge of the prospective foreign spouse’s character.
b. Passport (original and photocopy).
c. Latest Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) or Certificate of Singleness (original and photocopy) issued by PSA.
d. If your foreign spouse is a former Filipino citizen (and a divorcee) or someone who was previously married to a Filipino, he/she must obtain Judicial Recognition of the absolute decree of divorce from the country where the previous marriage was held.
For country-specific requirements and procedures, please refer to the following documents/links:
Go back to the main page: How to Get Married in the Philippines – An Ultimate Guide