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Getting married in Egypt

Hi all,

We invite all the ones who got married in Egypt or who are about to get married in Egypt to participate in this thread :)

What are the formalities to get married in Egypt? Is it the same for a couple of foreigners of for a mixed couple (between a foreigner and a native of Egypt)?

Are the procedures complicated?

How long does it take to carry out all the formalities?

Thank you in advance for participating,

Armand

As a Brit I got married at the Ministry of Justice in Cairo but it was 15 years ago!!!!!!  It takes about a week to get the papers from the British Embassy as you need their permissin to marry, and then you got to get stamps from another Egyptian government department in Midan Tahrir,Cairo.  You also need passport photographs of both of you for the contract of marriage. The actual "wedding"  is a civil ceramony, the only kind recognised by Egyptian government and you just go and take your turn.  Lol.  You go through to about 3 different offices,pay the money and finally sign your life away along with your thumb print on the contract.  The Ministry of Justice in Cairo is the only place a foreign national can marry an Egyptian national and it is like a production line!!!!  You can wait hours only to be told to come back the next day.  You need 2 male witnesses both with Egyptian ID cards to witness the marriage.  The contract is complicated.  Both being Muslim, we had a standard contract but many people have special marriage contracts drawn up..........this must be done in advance by an Egyptian lawyer and should have copies in both English and Arabic.  Any translations must be done by a certified translator and stamped.  It can be an expensive business getting married in Egypt, especially if you do not live in Cairo.  It is complex and it is worth doing your homework before you embark on this.  Your Embassy and the Egyptian Embassy should be able to help with formalities.  I do not know what it is like for 2 foreign nationals to be married in Egypt though.  One thing I would say is this.  Do not go into it lightly.  I have a wonderful husband I would not swap for anything and I love him as much now as when I married him but divorce is not good in Islamic society and is complicated here and never marry a man so he can get a visa.  I had the most terrible trouble getting my husband a visa just to meet my family in the UK because this practice has been escalating and they are more or less stopping all Egyptian men from getting a UK visa.  This spoils it for genuine visitors.  Be very sure of what you are doing.  Be sure of where you wish to live and be flexible.  Embrace the Egyptian culture.  Marriage is about a partnership.  If you have any doubts about living here............don't.  I may be an expat but I live as an Egyptian.  I live in an Egyptian neighbourhood, my daily life is very Egyptian spent with family, neigbours, friends whatever.  I speak arabic.  My western life is gone to all intents and purposes.................what can I say?  I love it!!!!!!!

Hi alexscot!

Thanks for your help ;)

Armand

hi, I only just saw this post.... the above info is correct, but I will just add that to marry in Lazoly Sq, Ministry of justice you also need medical papers now, we didnt realise this and they refused to see us until we got them, this wasn't difficult, went to a local hospital they told us about and got the papers there. also the Brit Embassy give you the necessary papers for the marriage on a Wednesday only, so if you go on a Sunday to fill out the forms, you can collect them on Wednesday, then you have to take them to The Ministry of Foreign affairs for a stamp before going to Lazoly sq. If the Brit person is divorced you must have these papers certified and given to the Embassy when you make the application for marriage.  Re divorce, it is not difficult, you just have to go back to Lazoly square and fill in paperwork, both parties need to sign and you can collect the divorce papers in about a week. You cannot re marry for 3 months and 1 day after the divorce. this info applies to British and I cannot say if it is the same for other nationalities.

Generally, you need the following before you go to the Office of Foreigner Marriage Registration at Ministry of Justice, Lazoghly Square, Downtown:

1- Family fund stamp, costs 50 EGP, sold at any Egypt Post office.

2- Medical check from any public hospital, free of charge, requires ID/Passport Copy + 2 personal photos.

3- For those who converted to Islam (were not born Muslims), you need a certificate of conversion to Islam, obtainable from Al-Azhar grand mosque, free of charge, requires Passport copy + Personal photo.

4- For the foreign party, you need your embassy's certificate of non-impediment (a.k.a Approval to marry). Requirements vary greatly from embassy to embassy in terms of documents, conditions and fees.

For instance embassy of Ukraine requires passport copy, personal photo (for the Ukrainian party) and payment of $60 for 3-day service or $120 for same-day service. On the other hand embassy of Russia requires a ton of documents from both partners (Egyptian and Russian). Embassy of Belarus requires a document from the Belorussian party from their home country proving they are single + payment of $30.   

Check ahead of arrival with your embassy in Cairo for the embassy's requirements to avoid unnecessary delays.

5- For the foreign party, if your embassy's approval does not state your religion, you need a document from the appropriate religious authority (refer to #3 for Muslims, for Christians you need a certificate of baptism from your local church here whether it's Orthodox, Catholic, Protestant, Anglican ...etc.)

6- You need to stamp your embassy's approval from the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Notary Office مكتب تصديقات وزارة الخارجية. Costs 11 Pounds and is served immediately.


7- You need original and copy of both parties' ID (Egyptian) and Passport (Foreign), 5 personal photos each (4x6 cm, white background), Copy of foreign party's entry stamp and visa.

8- You need two known male witnesses, and they need to bring their ID/passport and copies of which.

9- If the wife-to-be is divorced, she needs to bring her divorce, which needs to be final and 3 months must have elapsed since then. If she's a widow, 4 months and 10 days must elapse.

Divorce must be final (i.e.: agreed upon and the waiting period elapsed, OR the court order is a FINAL one after all appeals have been exhausted OR window for appeal passed without appeal).

All divorce documents must be EITHER issued by an Egyptian authority OR translated, stamped and notarized by the country's embassy AND subsequently the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (or by the Egyptian Embassy in that country).

10- For most nationalities you need your visa to be valid and to get a stamp of touristic residence (available at Tahrir Complex Office of Immigration for free, served immediately (just ask for registration stamp).

11- For females from the following nationalities, she needs first to have a 6-months (or more) non-touristic residence visa

1- Philippines
2- Thailand
3- Malaysia
4- Srilanka
5- Bangladesh
6- India
7- Pakistan
8- All ex-USSR countries
9- Israel (also males)

If the applicant already has a visa (dependent, through a relative, work, student ...etc.) she can go ahead, otherwise there is a workaround I will state at the end of the conditions.

12- If the difference in age between the couple is more than 25 years, approval from the Office of Minister of Justice must be obtained.

--------------

For point #11, if the wife-to-be does not have any means to get such visa (must be non-touristic), the following workaround can be done:

1- Obtain embassy approval per point #4 above. stamp it per point #6.
2- Get an Urfi marriage (common-law marriage) contract at a lawyer's office, costs around 500 EGP, must be stamped by the lawyer's office stamp.
3- Prepare the following : two copies of husband's ID card, wife's passport, wife's current visa, wife's entry stamp, embassy's approval, Urfi contract.
4- Proceed to Tahrir Complex - Office of Immigration, apply for a 6 month non-touristic residence visa using above documents.
5- After one week, couple will be interviewed by the Immigration Investigative services at the same place in Tahrir Complex. After that the documents will be sent to National Security for a background check.
6- After ~2 weeks, once visa is approved you can get the visa and pay the fees, after which you can proceed to get legally married.

:one

Alhamdullilah I am an old married woman!!!!!!  lol

It was much easier then but seemed to take forever.

Good luck to those getting married to Egyptian citizens and enjoy Egypt................she really is a wonderful country!!!!

Everything the first person said is 100% correct. I am American and married an Egyptian about a year ago.....we DID NOT need a medical record. We just showed, up after jumping through the hoops with the American Embassy.

I got married to my husband in the US and 7 years later, we married again in Egypt as it did not recognize our marriage. Had to do it at the Min. of Justice. Just a heads up for the women,
the marriage contract is just that and it is suppose to list what material assets you bring to the marriage, your mahr-the money or something the groom gives the bride without which the marriage is not valid,and what happens in case of divorce.
If you do not write out this stuff, your mahr is,by default, 1LE and if he divorces you,you will get 100LE and that is it. There is no alimony or anything like that here.If it is not hashed out in the contract,it does not happen so if he leaves you, you could be stuck with nothing but the clothes on your back and it is all legal.It is a little different if you have kids,in that you get the house if he leaves you but if you remarry,he can take the kids. Make sure your property and monies stay in your name. InshaAllah, your marriage is long and happy and forever but why take chances. Just something you need to think about. I had a friend whose husband loved her dearly but he died and then his family tried to take everything and she had 3 kids. I know another woman who had a good marriage but he died and his family then tossed her out on the street the day he was buried. So be careful.

I have married twice here, once in 1998 and we did not need a medical cert then, but when I remarried in June last year we did, we had to go to the local hospital to get it. I think things have changed somewhat now. At the first marriage we also did not have to take the marriage cert back to the Ministry of Foreign affairs for a stamp, only had to get a stamp before the marriage could take place, but this time we had to get the marriage cert stamped again after.

FYI, the medical check requirement for foreigners/mixed couples was introduced on May 29th 2011 .... I was there 2 weeks before that date and was told I do not need this. When I went back a month later they told me I need it and it was introduced on that date

I married my husband In Cairo 5 years ago and did not need the medical but it does take long time and and a lot of running around to get married. We have lived in the UK for 4 years now but are moving to Egypt next year God willing.

Very Nice Topic :)  Hoep I Can Share That With You Soon

Good Morning
Thank you for all your posts, they are very helpfull for me. I'm going to get married with an Egytian boy, I'm Italian.
I already have the documents from my Embassy.
I need to know if the documents you have listed in the above posts are still valid and also for italian.
The right address of the office where I have to go for marriage and if possible the email address or phone number.
Thank you for your reply to all

habibi81 :

Good Morning
Thank you for all your posts, they are very helpfull for me. I'm going to get married with an Egytian boy, I'm Italian.
I already have the documents from my Embassy.
I need to know if the documents you have listed in the above posts are still valid and also for italian.
The right address of the office where I have to go for marriage and if possible the email address or phone number.
Thank you for your reply to all

you just need to stamp the document you got from the Italian embassy at the Egyptian office of notary - Ministry of foreign affairs (there are several ones, one in Ahmed Orabi st., Mohandiseen, another in Nehro St., Heliopolis).

You also need health certificates for you and your fiancee (from any public hospital, you need two personal photos of each of you, his ID card copy, your passport copy).

You need to buy a 50 EGP Family Insurance Fund stamp from any post office also.

Does your embassy document state your religion or not? If not, you need a document from the local religious authority (Church, synagogue, Azhar mosque ...etc.). 

Also if it DOES state your religion as Muslim but you were not born a Muslim, you need a certificate of conversaion to Islam from Al Azhar mosque.

You need to go also to Tahrir (Al Mogamma), to get a stamp of residence on top of your visa. Only registration stamp since you are Italian, no need for residence visa.

The address of the office where you have to get married is easy. Lazoghly Square, Downtown, Ministry of Justice, Fourth Floor. No phone (they never answer) or email (you are dreaming/joking ... right :D ?)

Thank your for your answer, all is ready, I only need to know where to get the religion certificate.

They really do not have a mail? Do you have the website of marriage office?

habibi81 :

Thank your for your answer, all is ready, I only need to know where to get the religion certificate.

They really do not have a mail? Do you have the website of marriage office?

Mail? website?

LOL

My dear friend. This is Egyptian government. It's good they have telephones !! (Although they rarely/never answer them !!)

Religion certificate depends on your religion. What is your current religion?

I'm cristian but in italy no documents report my religion. I wrote to my embassy to know if they can put my religion on the paper they give to me to allow marriage

habibi81 :

I'm cristian but in italy no documents report my religion. I wrote to my embassy to know if they can put my religion on the paper they give to me to allow marriage

If the embassy in Cairo will write your religion in the Approval document, you don't need anything.

Otherwise, you need to visit your church in Egypt (orthodox, catholic ...etc.) to get a certificate of Baptism ....


Also, have you ever been married before? If the embassy does not state you have never been married and that you are divorced/widowed, you need to bring with you the relevant documents (divorce in case of divorce, certificate of last marriage AND death ...etc.), and have it translated, notarized by the embassy AND the Egyptian MFA

no, I was never been married before, but in my documents for the embassy is stated that i m not married.

I live in italy, should i have to go to a catholic church in Egypt? where i can find one in cairo?

Sorry for all these question but i want to leave my contry with all the documents, because i need to take holidays from work

habibi81 :

no, I was never been married before, but in my documents for the embassy is stated that i m not married.

I live in italy, should i have to go to a catholic church in Egypt? where i can find one in cairo?

Sorry for all these question but i want to leave my contry with all the documents, because i need to take holidays from work

Well if the approval document from the embassy says you are Christian you don't need this.

Yes there is a Catholic church in Cairo but I don't know where but this is easy I can ask my friends. But first off you need to call your embassy/consulate in Cairo and ask if they mention religion in their approval or not.

Thank you for your answer. I wrote to my embassy, I'll wait for the answer and I'll let you know.
Do you know if the health certificate can be done in Italy? i dont like to go to Egyptian hospital and someone told to me they also make blood check

habibi81 :

Thank you for your answer. I wrote to my embassy, I'll wait for the answer and I'll let you know.
Do you know if the health certificate can be done in Italy? i dont like to go to Egyptian hospital and someone told to me they also make blood check

No .... cannot be done in Italy. Must be done in Egypt and ONLY in a public hospital (not a private one). and don't worry we don't have "vampires" in Egyptian hospitals and we certainly do NOT reuse syringes or needles !

and for your information when I went with my wife they did not do a blood check or anything ! they did not even "check" anything we just signed and gave our fingerprints !

You can also call your embassy at 0020227943194, 0020227943195 or 0020227940658 if you need a faster response.

I'd recommend for you "El Monira public hospital". It's downtown and quite near to the Lazoghly office for foreigner marriage. They are used to having foreigners there.

I am a Muslim convert and I have the documentation from Al Azhar but we didnt have to show it to anyone, no one asked for it. We also didnt have any tests done in the hospital, we just went, gave them some cash, our fingerprints, waited 20 mins and was given the papers.

Yasmeen-Hosni :

I am a Muslim convert and I have the documentation from Al Azhar but we didnt have to show it to anyone, no one asked for it. We also didnt have any tests done in the hospital, we just went, gave them some cash, our fingerprints, waited 20 mins and was given the papers.

I agree with you about the hospital part. This is pretty much what happened with us.


About the conversion part, if from your name they "think" you were born Muslim, they don't ask for it.

But when my best friend 8 years ago married a Puerto Rican convert to Islam they asked her for the Azhar document in Lazoghly. and as far as I know they still ask for it.

I got answer from my embassy, they will wrote on my authorization for marriage my religion, so this problem is solved now.

I can also send by mail my documents to embassy and be there only when i ve to pick up the authorizazion.. and this is good as i cannot stay so much time in Egypt

habibi81 :

I got answer from my embassy, they will wrote on my authorization for marriage my religion, so this problem is solved now.

I can also send by mail my documents to embassy and be there only when i ve to pick up the authorizazion.. and this is good as i cannot stay so much time in Egypt

OK ... So this is one errand you do not have to run .

Now all you need is health certificates (go to the hospital as soon as you arrive in Egypt), get the visa registration stamp from Tahrir as soon as you arrive also (visa registration stamp only, not a residence visa/new visa), and after you get the document from the embassy you have to go stamp it from Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Notary office (Mohandiseen or Heliopolis), buy the Family Fund stamp (50 EGP) from any post office, get personal photos for you and your fiance, photocopy everything, get two witnesses, and go get married !

Hi, I am planning to be married in Cairo soon and was just wondering if anybody knows if you can go to the British Embassy to apply for the statutory declaration and collect it on the same day? I am only in Cairo for one week so am limited on time to get everything done and I know there are restrictions on what times and days the different departments are open. Thanks in advance.

SharH :

Hi, I am planning to be married in Cairo soon and was just wondering if anybody knows if you can go to the British Embassy to apply for the statutory declaration and collect it on the same day? I am only in Cairo for one week so am limited on time to get everything done and I know there are restrictions on what times and days the different departments are open. Thanks in advance.

For that you'd need to contact the British embassy

http://ukinegypt.fco.gov.uk/en/about-us … contact-us

Thanks, I have sent them a message but am still waiting a reply. I just thought someone who has been through the same situation may know.

SharH :

Thanks, I have sent them a message but am still waiting a reply. I just thought someone who has been through the same situation may know.

The British Embassy in Egypt has a bad habit of changing rules, fees, time lines and required documents for everything quite often ...... I would not recommend taking such information from any other source (unless that person has been through the same situation quite recently ......

They open 10 to 13 (9 to 12 British time) and an International call might cost you a little but would definitely save you some hassle, time and a bigger loss of money if you come here and don't finish what you came for ...... The phone number is 0020227916000. Had I been in Cairo at the moment I would've called but I am unfortunately not.

Thank you for your help. I will give them a call to find out. From what I have read, you can collect papers on a wednesday but my flights to and from Cairo are currently falling on the Wednesday! Am sure I will sort something out! Thanks again for your help.

I had a message back from the British Embassy and they said:

In general if you both parties come to the Embassy either on a Sunday, Monday or Tuesday of a particular week, then you can receive the Statutory Declaration on a Wednesday of that particular week. If you come in on Thursday, then it will be issued the following Wednesday since Statutory Declarations are only issued on a Wednesday.



Please ensure that you come in as early as you can, with the required documents and during our public counter hours from 10:00 till 13:00 from Sunday till Thursday.
Just thought I would share incase anyone else finds themselves in the same situation as me. Am off to Cairo a week today, lots of stress, but I know it will be well worth it. Thanks for your advice!

Hi!

I am planning to get married to my egyptian fiance at the end of June. I already have the document declaring that I am free to get married. Do you know if it would be possible that somebody else takes the document  to the ministry of foreign affairs or do I must bring it?

I also would like to ask you if you know if Al Azhar fawta office is open on Fridays? I converted to Islam  few years ago and I went to Al Azhar to do the 'muslim certificate' but I could not collect it. I am arriving to Cairo on a Friday and I would like to collect the certificate same day if possible.

Thanks in advance for your help!

adri05sv :

Hi!

I am planning to get married to my egyptian fiane at the end of June. I already have the document declaring that I am free to get married. Do you know if it would be possible that somebody else takes the document to the ministry of foreign affairs or does it need to be done personally?

I also would like to ask you if you know if Al Azhar fawta office is open on Fridays? I converted to Islam  few years ago and I went to Al Azhar to do the 'muslim certificate' but I could not collect it. I am arriving to Cairo on a Friday and I would like to collect the certificate same day if possible.

Thanks in advance for your help!

You have the document from your embassy in Egypt, or from your home country? Document from home country - unless notarized by your embassy in Egypt - is useless, since the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs does nothing but verify the signature of the consular officer who signed/stamped the document per their records of the authorized consular staff.

Anyone can stamp documents at the MFA.

Al-Azhar office you need is "Office of Declaration of Islam of Foreigners", not the Fatwa office, and No it is not open on Friday.

Hi, thanks for your answer! I have no embassy in Egypt (in fact we do not even have diplomatic relationships with any Arabic country except Morroco and Qatar). I know other Salvadorian girl married to an Egyptian and it looks like they accepted the document from my country becuse it has to be sign by the city major,  our supreme court of Justice and our ministry of foreign affairs... uff a bit more complicated (I presume) than for people for countries with embassy in Egypt!

adri05sv :

Hi, thanks for your answer! I have no embassy in Egypt (in fact we do not even have diplomatic relationships with any Arabic country except Morroco and Qatar). I know other Salvadorian girl married to an Egyptian and it looks like they accepted the document from my country becuse it has to be sign by the city major,  our supreme court of Justice and our ministry of foreign affairs... uff a bit more complicated (I presume) than for people for countries with embassy in Egypt!

In such case, it's OK. I would recommend before sending the original document to get it stamped by the MFA, to send a scanned copy to your fiance here, and he can take it to the MFA and ask them if they can stamp this (to make sure the rules have not changed). If they say OK, you can mail the original and get it stamped.

Stamp takes less than a minute and costs less than $2 !

i can not add any details they all told you what to do exactly ..... :D

hey every one .
i have a question i know  there are many answers already for it but i just want to figure out something .. im gettin married to my fiance n she is Swedish n iam egyptian n we gettin married in egypt , she is comin in couple of weeks to she got the birth cert. in english but some papers need to be signed n stamped from the foreign ministry in Sweden so i wana knw if the swedish embassy could do it here in cairo or it must be done in sweden and also what other papers we could need .
thanks in advanced :)

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