Translation of marriage certificates: don’t let the law set you apart

The translation of marriage certificates is an increasingly common type of sworn translation. Today’s borders are much more relaxed, and many people have international experiences. Who doesn’t have a friend abroad?

It’s no surprise that we often fall in love with someone from another country. It sometimes even leads to getting married. That’s when we come in! You aren’t the first person to ask us to translate marriage certificates, so here’s how:


Love: a universal concept

It seems that we all fall in love, whatever our culture. Don’t think you’re any different! That passion and desire to see the other person is more important than anything else in the world. Going on a thousand and one adventures together… Sounds familiar?

From the Kalahari to London or Paris, or from the New Zealand Maori to the Algonquin stories of North America, all these are familiar experiences to us.

In 1992, anthropologists William Jankowiak and Edward F. Fisher conducted a study in which they analysed over 160 cultures. They concluded that, although with different ways of conceiving it, love was a universal concept. Wherever you go, you won’t escape it so you’d better have someone to refer to for translating marriage certificates.


Cultural differences arise in the path of love in marriage

Love is universal. And marriage? Well, as we understand it in our society, isn’t.

That’s why it’s important in cases with weddings between foreign couples, that their marriage certificates are translated. Make sure everyone understands! Depending on the culture, there are many kinds of marriages. Not all marriages are valid in every country!


We can distinguish between polygyny (a man married to many women) and polyandry (a woman married to many men). Polygamy is allowed in many countries, but in others such as Spain or France, it’s punishable by law.


Although it’s hard to consider when you’re in love, divorce is a central theme in the marriage business. Depending on where you get married, you will be married until death do you part (or until legislation changes), whether you like it or not.

In the Philippines and Vatican City divorce is totally forbidden. Other countries like Saudi Arabia, if there are children, the father will almost certainly get custody. As for India or Sri Lanka, a divorce can drag on for many years because of the slow nature of the legal system.

Furthermore, a divorce that is not by mutual consent must have grounds in any legal system to proceed. Not all countries understand gender-based violence in the same way in their legislation (in fact there are 45 countries including Russia and Morocco, that do not have this issue in their legislation).


The solution? Get married in the most suitable country and translate your marriage certificates

When we’re in love, we think it’s for the rest of our life. But it doesn’t always work out like this. It’s best to clarify things from the start. The advantage of weddings between foreign couples is that they can take place in either country.

Our advice? Find out which country has the most open legislation (Spain is one example), get married there and find an expert to translate the marriage certificates in the other person’s country.

Remember that this must be a sworn translation that is stamped by someone with the authority to do so according to the national authorities. And live life to the full after a beautiful honeymoon!


Love is universal, but marriage changes with culture

Feelings can be common to different societies. But the variation in how we manage them is huge. Imagine, when we can’t understand the relationships that our nearest and dearest get themselves into, what would understanding that be like in a foreign country?

That’s why marriage is legislated differently in each country. Therefore, choose carefully where you get married and always resort to professional sworn translators to translate marriage certificates. Certified translation, of course.

Unsure about how to ask for a sworn translation of marriage certificates? Contact us now.

About the author

Oscar Nogueras

Es el CEO de Ontranslation y dedica algunos ratos libres a escribir en este blog para compartir sus conocimientos sobre internacionalización, cross-border ecommerce y Traducción SEO. No es para menos, ya que entre su formación cuenta con una licenciatura en filología inglesa, un máster en tradumática, un posgrado en elearning y un MBA. En definitiva, una declaración de intenciones donde la cultura y los idiomas se sirven mezclados, no agitados.

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