A citizen of the Czech Republic may enter into marriage with a foreign national in the Czech Republic through a civil or religious marriage. Civil marriage is performed by a public official (mayor, deputy mayor, councillor), while a religious wedding ceremony is officiated by a representative of a church or a religious organisation.
Marriage is contracted by the free and full consent of a man and a woman who intend to enter into marriage (fiancés), declaring that they are entering into marriage. The declaration of consent is made publicly and solemnly in the presence of two witnesses.
Things to Do before Entering into Marriage
At first, decide on the place and the approximate date of your wedding. If you want a civil marriage, contact the civil registry office that has jurisdiction over the administrative district of your wedding ceremony venue. Civil registry offices can be found at town (city) halls or city district offices. If you would like a religious marriage ceremony, contact a person authorised by a church or a religious organisation recognised by the state.
Arrive at the civil registry office early enough to allow you to get all paperwork done (for the required documents, see below). At the office, you will set the exact date of your wedding and learn all you need to know.
Before contracting marriage, the fiancés have to fill in the Questionnaire for Entering into Marriage. This form is available at the civil registry office and it can also be downloaded here. The first part of the form is filled in by the fiancés (with the help of a civil registry official), the second part is filled in by the civil registry official.
In addition, you must provide the following documents to prove your legal competence to enter into marriage:
- The fiancé who has Czech citizenship submits:
1) Birth certificate (original or officially certified copy)
2) Czech identity card or a valid travel document (if the ID does not include information on personal status and the permanent residence address, it is also necessary to provide this information by submitting an extract from the Information System of Inhabitant Records).
3) Extracts from the Information System of Inhabitant Records on personal status and the permanent residence abroad or equivalent documents issued by the state in in which the fiancé(e) permanently resides (if issued by the foreign state).
4) Court final judgement of divorce of a previous marriage (if the fiancé(e) is divorced) or a death certificate of a deceased spouse, if the fiancé(e) is widowed.
- The fiancé who is a foreign national submits:
1) Identification document
2) Birth certificate
3) Certificate of nationality (can be confirmed by a travel document)
4) Certificate of legal competence to enter into marriage, not older than 6 months on the day of the marriage.
5) Certificate of personal status and residence, if it is issued by the foreign country and if it is not a part of the certificate of legal competence to enter into marriage.
6) Death certificate of a deceased spouse, if the fiancé(e) is widowed.
7) Court final judgement of divorce of a previous marriage (if the fiancé(e) is divorced).
8) at latest on the day of marriage: Confirmation of legal residence in the Czech Republic issued by the Foreign Police of the CR not earlier than 7 working days before the marriage. This does not apply, if the fiancé(e) is a citizen of the European Union, a citizen of a contracting state to the Agreement on the European Economic Area, or their family member.
Protocol on Contracting Marriage
Based on the documents listed above, you will fill in the Protocol on Contracting Marriage at the civil registry office together with the registry official. The Protocol includes names, surnames, and national identification numbers of witnesses. Foreigners state their date and place of birth instead of national identification numbers.
A religious wedding ceremony can only be conducted by an authorised representative of a state-recognised church or religious organisation.
The documents that need to be submitted are the same as the documents required for civil marriage (see above).
Come in person to the civil registry office with jurisdiction over the place of your religious wedding ceremony and submit a written application for a certificate confirming that all the statutory conditions under the Czech Family Act have been met. You will then provide this certificate to the representative of your church or religious organisation. On the wedding day, this document must not be older than 3 months.
The church representative will deliver the Protocol on Contracting Marriage to the civil registry office within 3 working days after the wedding.
Foreign National’s Obligations after the Wedding
The civil registry office will issue your marriage certificate within 30 days (33 days if you had a religious ceremony).
Report the change of your personal status and the change of your surname (if any) to the Department for Asylum and Migration Policy (OAMP) of the Ministry of the Interior of the CR within 3 working days.
EU citizens and their family members report changes in marital status and name within 15 working days.
Submit the new passport at the OAMP. The OAMP will most probably issue a new residence permit for you.
Community Property of Spouses
In the Czech Republic, once a couple gets married, their property rights change to a special statutory regime of co-ownership of property and financial obligations. It is called community property of spouses. The community property of spouses includes everything acquired by one or both of the spouses during their marriage. Exceptions are, in particular, assets that serve the personal needs of one of the spouses and assets that were acquired as a gift or inheritance by only one of the spouses.
Spouses in the CR may agree on a matrimonial property regime different from the statutory one. The spouses may agree to expand or reduce the scope of the community property. Such agreement has to be drawn up in the form of an authentic instrument.
Property Settlement after Divorce
Registered partnership is a permanent union of two persons of the same sex. It is contracted by a declaration of the two partners that they want to enter into a partnership. To be able to enter into registered partnership, both partners have to be over 18 years old and at least one of them has to be a Czech citizen. Registered partnership may not be contracted by relatives in the ascending line and siblings.
The declaration is made in the presence of a civil registry official. If one of the partners is a foreign national and does not understand Czech, it is necessary to provide interpreting by a court interpreter who will also sign the protocol. The presence of witnesses is not required.
Contact the civil registry office that has jurisdiction over the place of your permanent residence. A list of relevant civil registry offices can be found on the website of the Ministry of the Interior of the CR.
The documents required are similar to those required for contracting marriage (see above):
- Birth certificate, passport.
- Certificate of legal competence to enter into registered partnership (not older than 6 months), if issued by the foreign state.
- Certificate of personal status and residence, if issued by the foreign state.
- Death certificate of a deceased spouse, judgement of divorce, or a judicial decision on cancellation of partnership, if applicable.
- If your permanent residence is outside the CR, you also need to submit a Confirmation of legal residence in the Czech Republic issued by the Foreign Police of the CR not older than 7 working days. This confirmation is not required from EU citizens.
- If you have been granted asylum or subsidiary protection, the competent civil registry office may waive the requirement of authentication of documents if it constitutes an insurmountable obstacle.
More information on entering into registered partnership in Czech is available on the website of the Ministry of the Interior of the CR.
Useful links and contacts:
- For more information on marriage between Czech nationals and foreign nationals, see the website of the Ministry of the Interior of the CR.
- The Questionnaire for Entering into Marriage is available for download here.
- Detailed information on entering into marriage with a foreign national is available on the website of the Centre for the Integration of Foreigners.