What do I need to take into account if I decide to get married or enter into a registered partnership outside the Netherlands?

You will need to consider the following if you are a Dutch national living outside the Netherlands and wish to marry or enter into a registered partnership.

Consent of the country in which the marriage or registered partnership will take place

If you wish to marry or enter into a registered partnership outside the Netherlands you will need to check whether as a foreign national you can do so under the law of the country in question. To find out, you should consult the foreign authority responsible for conducting marriages and registering partnerships. You cannot marry at a Dutch embassy or consulate abroad.

Documents required for marriage or registered partnership outside the Netherlands

The foreign authority that conducts your marriage or registers your partnership can tell you which documents you require. These may include a copy of your birth certificate or a certificate of marital status.

Registering a foreign marriage certificate or certificate of registered partnership

If you live in the Netherlands, you will need to register your foreign marriage or registered partnership in the Personal Records Database (Basisregistratie personen, BRP) This is not possible if you are a Dutch national living outside the Netherlands. Dutch nationals living outside the Netherlands are advised to register their foreign marriage certificate or certificate of registered partnership in the Dutch register. See the municipality of The Hague’s Foreign Document Department (in Dutch). You will then be able to apply for an extract or certified copy of the document at any time.

Legalisation of a foreign marriage certificate or certificate of registered partnership

If you wish to register your foreign marriage certificate or certificate of registered partnership in the Netherlands you will first need to have your foreign certificate legalised. This can be done by the authorities in the country where you were married. The Dutch diplomatic mission in the country in question can then legalise the marriage certificate or certificate of registered partnership.

Declaration of intent to marry

The local authorities in some countries ask for a declaration of intent to marry. The Dutch embassy or consulate in the country where you wish to marry can issue this declaration.

Certificate of unmarried status or certificate of the capacity to contract marriage

Some countries require you to prove you are not married or that you do not already have a registered partnership with someone else. In that case you will require a certificate of unmarried status or a certificate of the capacity to contract marriage. The foreign authority that will marry you or register your partnership might ask for one of these certificates. You can apply to the Register of Births, Deaths, Marriages and Registered Partnerships in your last place of residence for these documents.

If you are a Dutch national living abroad and wish to marry outside the Netherlands, you can contact a Non-residents Records Database (RNI) municipality for an extract from the Personal Records Database (BRP). The following municipalities maintain an RNI: Alkmaar, Almelo, Amsterdam, Breda, Doetinchem, Eindhoven, Groningen, Goes, Heerlen, Leeuwarden, Leiden, Nijmegen, Rotterdam, Terneuzen, The Hague, Utrecht, Venlo, Westland and Zwolle.

The extract contains information on your marital status at the moment of emigration.

Ministry responsible