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Family Members and Marriage for Expats in Cyprus

Author: Jim Newham
Submitted: January 2014

Family Members

Ideally, when you immigrate to a new country, you are able to bring the rest of your family with you. This means that, while getting to grips with the unfamiliar land you have moved to, you can give each other invaluable emotional support. Of course, this may not be possible for legal, financial or logistical reasons. With you already in the country, however,  it will at least be easier to arrange their visas, work, school and other matters in advance.

In most cases, before you can bring your spouse into Cyprus, you need to have either worked in the country for five years, hold a five-year work permit, or a combination of the two. This restriction has been relaxed for certain professions, including accountants, lecturers and reporters.

Bringing your spouse and children under 18 into Cyprus does not require any further administrative procedures. The situation may vary further depending on whether you and your family are first-time immigrants into Cyprus or you are a returning Cypriot citizen with a family of non-nationals.

Cyprus has tight laws regarding the immigration of refugees and their families. Only 3% of asylum seekers are granted refugee status, and it is generally very hard for refugees to bring other family members into the country.

Non-EU family members of EU citizens may apply for a Residence Certificate. This shows that they have been granted leave to stay in the country. To apply, documents proving family relationship and the EU citizen’s status must be submitted.

There may be financial, legal or other reasons why your family members are not able to immigrate at the same time as you. This could happen particularly if you are a refugee or if you are an Cypriot citizen wanting to bring your non-national spouse and family into Cyprus to live.

In such cases, you may need to spend some time residing and working in Cyprus, perhaps remitting money to your home country to help support your family there. During the wait, you can take the time to familiarise yourself with your new country of residence. Once you have taken care of matters such as finding suitable family accommodation and looking into schools, childcare and the like, the rest of your family should find that their move into Cyprus runs more smoothly.

In the meantime, family members will of course want to visit you if this is practicable. To do so, they may need am entry visa. They may also need to provide documentary evidence that they have enough money to support themselves.

 

Marriage

As it is such a beautiful destination with a very agreeable climate, Cyprus is a popular country in which to get married. As there are no residency requirements, getting married in Cyprus is possible for residents and non-residents alike.

In Cyprus, the minimum age you can get married is 18. Written consent from father, mother or guardian will be required for each party who is under 18]. Civil partnership is legal for same-sex couples, and gay marriage has been mooted in the past few years.

To start the process, you need to apply in person to the Marriage Officer in the municipality in which you want to get married. This involves filling in a Notice of Marriage in the minister’s presence, with the following documents present:

You must also affirm that you are legally permitted to marry. In all cases, if you have been married before, you must documentation that proves that you are fit to marry: divorce decrees absolute and death certificates, as appropriate.

 

 

 




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