In the context of international integration, many foreign nationals intend to enter Vietnam. On the contrary, many Vietnamese citizens want to go abroad. When two parties meet and develop social relationships, marriage cases arise. Usually, when marrying a foreigner, each party needs to find out about his/her spouse’s laws regarding marriage. In this article, LSX legal firm will give you an insight into: “Vietnamese civil servants marry foreigners”
- Law on Marriage and Family 2014
- Decree 123/2015/ND-CP
Marriage involving foreign elements
The current Law on Marriage and Family as well as its guiding documents do not have specific provisions on the concept of marriage involving foreign elements, but only provide an explanation of the marriage relationship regarding foreign elements.
Marriage and family relations involving foreign elements under Private International Law mean marriage and family relations in the following cases:
- Firstly, at least one partner is a foreigner or an overseas Vietnamese.
- Secondly, partners are Vietnamese citizens but the bases for establishing, changing, or terminating that relationship is governed by foreign law.
- Thirdly, the relation arises abroad, or the property related to that relation is located abroad.
From the explanation of the marriage relationship with foreign elements according to the Law on Marriage and Family 2014, you can see that the marriage relationship with foreign elements includes the following relationships: the husband-wife relationship involving foreign elements, the alimony relationship involving foreign elements, the guardianship relationship involving foreign elements, and the divorce relationship involving foreign elements.
Application for registration of marriage with a foreigner
- Both partners may fill out a single application form for marriage registration.
- A document certifying the marital status of a foreigner is a document that is issued by a foreign competent authority, remains valid, and certifies that the holder is single. If the foreign country does not issue a document certifying marital status, an equivalent document issued by the foreign competent authority certifying the holder’s eligibility for marriage as prescribed in the law of such country required.
In case the document certifying the marital status of a foreigner has an indefinite term, such document and the certificate issued by the health facility as prescribed in Clause 1 Article 38 of the Law on civil status shall only remain valid for 6 months from the date of issue.
- In case the foreigner party does not have passport, he/she may present an international travel paper or a residence card.
- Additionally, if the Vietnamese party obtained divorce or granted marriage annulment at a foreign competent authority, he/she shall also submit a copy of vital records about such divorce or marriage annulment. If the partner being a Vietnamese citizen is an official or public employee or an armed force official, he or she shall also submit a document issued by the authority certifying that his or her marriage to the foreigner is conformable with the regulations of such sector.
Make the application for marriage registration in one set and submit it directly to the district-level Justice Department where the Vietnamese citizen permanently or temporarily resides. For districts and cities that implement the one-stop-shop mechanism, submit the application directly at the receiving and result-returning section. Submit dossiers to the Commune People’s Committee for cases of marriage in the border area between Vietnamese citizens and foreign citizens living in the same border area.
Can Vietnamese civil servants marry foreigners?
Marriage between a man and a woman is established on the principle of completely voluntary agreement between the two parties. The Law on Marriage and Family 2014 stipulates cases of prohibition on marriage as follows:
- Sham marriage or sham divorce;
- Underage marriage, forcing a person into marriage, deceiving a person into marriage, obstructing marriage;
- A married person getting married to or cohabitating as husband and wife with another person, or an unmarried person getting married to or cohabitating as husband and wife with a married person;
- Getting married or cohabitating as husband and wife between people of the same direct bloodline; relatives within three generations; adoptive parent and adopted child; or former adoptive parent and adopted child, father-in-law, and daughter-in-law, mother-in-law and son-in-law, or stepparent and stepchild;
- Demanding property in marriage;
- Forcing a person into divorce; deceiving a person into divorce; obstructing divorce;
- Giving birth with assisted reproductive technology for commercial purposes, commercial gestational surrogacy, prenatal sex selection, cloning;
- Domestic violence;
- Taking advantage of marriage and family rights for human trafficking, labor exploitation, sexual abuse, or committing another act for self-seeking purposes.
The marriage of a Vietnamese civil servant to a foreigner does not violate any of the above prohibitions. Other legal provisions also do not prohibit marriage between civil servants and foreigners. So, a Vietnamese civil servant completely has the right to enter into marriage with a foreigner.
Order and procedures for recording marriage in civil status books
Article 48 and 50 of the Law on Civil Status 2014 stipulates the recording in the civil status book about matters of Vietnamese citizens settled at competent foreign agencies and marriage, divorce, or annulment of marriage. On the other hand, Article 35 of Decree 123/2015/ND-CP provides provisions on guiding the procedure of Article 48 and 50 of the Law on Civil Status 2014 as follows:
Article 35. Procedures for marriage recordAn application for marriage record shall be submitted by either one partner at the competent authority as prescribed in Clause 1 Article 48 of the Law on civil status, including:
a) An application form as prescribed;
b) A copy of the marriage certificate issued by the foreign competent authority;
c) Apart from documents prescribed in Points a and b of this Clause, if the application is submitted by post, copies of documents prescribed in Clause 1 Article 2 of this Decree are also required; if the partner being a Vietnamese citizen obtained divorce or marriage annulment at the foreign competent authority, a copy of the record of such divorce or marriage annulment prescribed in Clause 2 Article 37 of this Decree is also required.
Time limit for a marriage record is 5 working days, from the date on which the Committee Division of Justice receives the application.
In case of necessity to verify, the processing time limit is 10 working days.
Procedures for marriage records shall be consistent with Clause 2 Article 50 of the Law on civil status and the following:
a) If the application is considered satisfactory as prescribed in Article 34 of this Decree, the Chief of Committee Division of Justice shall document the marriage in the vital records and request the President of the People’s Committee of the district to sign the original copy from the vital records to the applicant.
b) If the application is considered unsatisfactory as prescribed in Clause 1 Article 36 of this Decree, the Chief of Committee Division of Justice shall request the President of the People’s Committee of the district to refuse it.
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Frequently asked questions
Usually, this certificate issued by a foreign competent authority. This document must confirm that the person currently does not have a spouse and in the validity term.
In case foreigners do not have this paper, they can replace it with a document issued by a foreign competent authority certifying that the person eligible for marriage in accordance with the laws of that country.
District-level People’s Committees of places of residence of Vietnamese citizens have the competence to record in the civil status book the birth registration; marriage; guardianship; parent and child recognition; parent and child identification; adoption; and civil status change already settled at competent foreign agencies.
Committee Division of Justice shall request the President of the People’s Committee of the district to sign 2 originals of marriage certificates in case the application for marriage registration valid and both spouses satisfy conditions for marriage as well as not fall into cases of marriage registration refusal.