Destination Wedding in Greece – Legal Requirements
Civil Ceremony: Greece
Greece is a perfect choice for a wedding ceremony. There is a wonderful choice of locations which are suitable for any kind of wedding ceremony you may have in mind especially if you wish to have your wedding on Santorini, Rhodes, or in any other location.
The Greek ceremony takes approximately 15 minutes and can be customised by exchanging your own personal vows at the ceremony.
Two witnesses are normally required for a civil ceremony (min. age 18) in Greece.
All ceremonies are conducted in English and Greek. If you need a translator for another language, this can also be arranged.
Here is some helpful information to know in which order to start planning your wedding day in Greece:
- When planning a wedding in Greece we recommend you to start the legal process 3 months in advance of your planned wedding date.
- Both bride and groom must be over 18 years old.
- The bride and groom must obtain a marriage licence before coming to Greece from their current place of residence. However, this only applies, if neither the bride nor the groom is a Greek resident.
- Although there is no necessity for foreign nationals wishing to marry in Greece to be a resident, the bureaucratic procedure may take several weeks before you can obtain your marriage certificate.
- Providing everything is in order and your legal documents have been checked, the law not states that you must be in Greece for a certain numbers of days, however we recommend arriving at least three full days before your wedding date.
Organising the necessary paperwork can be complicated sometimes, nevertheless as long as you check all your documents thoroughly beforehand; it should be surprisingly easier than you think to get married in Greece. Please note that the necessary documentation varies depending on your country of residence (for more details contact your wedding planner).
- An office request for a civil marriage in Greece will be made to the Mayor which the bride and groom have to sign after they arrival in Greece.
- The bride and groom need to bring their passports and need to make a photocopy (No translation needed).
- The bride and groom both need a Certificate of ‘No Impediment’ issued by your town hall. This verifies that you are indeed single and that there are no problems for you to get legally married. Crucial for this document is the three month validity. So the wedding must take place within this period (Apostille stamp and Translation in Greek are needed).
- The bride and groom both need a Birth Certificate, (Apostille stamp and the Translation in Greek are needed).
- Photocopies of the Passports from the 2 ‘witnesses’ (if required). These photocopies should be submitted to the Town Hall of Santorini.
- Adoption, Divorce Certificate, Spouse’s death certificate if applicable (Apostille and Translation in Greek are needed).
- In case that you do not have access to a Consulate or Greek Embassy, you can send the documents by courier or via register mail and we will take care of all the legal translation.
Please note the following:
- At least 1 month before the wedding day all authenticated and translated documents need to be posted or faxed. When we receive the documents, we will send you the confirmation of the wedding date issued by the Municipality verifying all your documents are in order.
- The Greek authorities require that all the requested documents mentioned above (except for the Divorce certificate) must be issued no more than 3 months before the wedding date.
- Before the ceremony, all original documents and official translations required by the Town Hall need to be submitted. Don’t forget to bring all the official translations and original documents with you to Greece. The wedding cannot take place without these original documents.
- Information on the Apostille Stamp: The Apostille stamp legalizes the necessary copies and verify that they are true copies which is stipulated for the legalization procedure to take place in Greece http://www.fco.gov.uk/ (Legalization Department)
The officially signed marriage certificate will be issued after your ceremony and is internationally valid.