LOGIN or JOIN
information for global expats



Family Members and Marriage for Expats in Russia

Author: Jim Newham
Submitted: February 2014

Family Members

Ideally, when you immigrate to another country, you are able to bring your partner and children with you at the same time. If this is not financially or otherwise possible, you may need to spend some time working in Russia, possibly remitting money to your home country to help support your family. Once you have started to familiarise yourself with Russia, found some suitable family accommodation and perhaps looked into schools and such things, you may find it easier to move the rest of your family into the country.

As with most other aspects of Russian immigration, arranging a visit to family or friends in Russia involves a lot of administration. The official procedure for doing this involves applying for a private visa. To do so, the person resident in Russia will need to write a letter of recommendation and submit it to the Federal Migration Service. However, the invitation on its own can take upwards of three months to obtain. An alternative is to apply for a tourist visa and obtain an invitation from an institution such as a hotel.

To enter Russia to join an established family member on a more permanent basis, you will need an Accompanying Spouse visa or a Dependant visa, whichever is appropriate. Each child will need a separate visa.

Marriage

It is not too onerous a task for two Russians to get married. However, marriage in Russia when at least one party is a non-resident may be complicated by international agreements that are in place. This may involve a notice of marriage period and other administrative procedures.

There is no special type of marriage visa or such like in Russia. Non-resident couples can enter the country with any type of visa, though you will need to have one that lasts 90 days. Documents you will need include the following:

  • passports with the correct visas.
  • birth certificates
  • marriageability certificate (names for this document vary from country to country)
    • This certificate may need to be officially stamped, or legalised by attaching an Apostille Certificate; it generally has a limited period of validity.

If this is not your first marriage, you will also need proof that any previous marriages have ended, i.e. final divorce documents or death certificates. All documents you submit need to be translated into Russian and stamped by a Russian notary. It is best to get all the documents translated at the same time, for consistency and to keep name transliterations consistent.

The next stage is to arrange a registration appointment at the local registry office (ZAGS.) While attending the appointment, which will be after a minimum of 30 days, you will need to pay the registration fee. The fee can also be paid at any branch of Sberbank, the government bank. During the appointment, assuming your documents are all present and correct, you will be given an application form complete (in Russian only.) Once you have submitted the form and it has been approved, the ZAGS official will allocate a date for your wedding. This will be from 31 to 60 days after the date of the appointment.

To be legally married and obtain a valid marriage certificate, you need to hold a civil ceremony. If you also want a religious ceremony in one of Russia’s many magnificent churches, you will need to arrange it separately. As might be expected, marriage and the solemnisation of civil partnerships for same-sex couples are illegal in Russia.

 

Contribute

We value input from our readers. If you spot an error on this page or have any suggestions, please let us know.

 

Moving to Russia

If you are considering moving to Russia or are soon to depart, you can find helpful information and advice in the Expat Briefing dedicated Russian section including; details of immigration and visas, Russian forums, Russian event listings and service providers in Russia.

picture1 Read More

Living in Russia

From your safety to shoppingliving in Russia can yield great benefits as well as occasional drawbacks.  Find your feet and stay abreast of the latest developments affecting expats in Russia with relevant news and up-to-date information.

picture1 Read More

Working in Russia

Working in Russia can be rewarding as well as stressful, if you don't plan ahead and fulfill any legal requirements. Find out about visas and passports, owning and operating a company in Russia, and general Russian culture of the labour market.

picture1 Read More


 
 
 
 

Information

About | Useful Links | Global Media Partners | Media | Advertising And Sales | Banners And Widgets | Glossary | RSS | Privacy & Cookies | Terms And Conditions | Editorial Policy | Refer To A Friend | Newsletters | Contact | Site Map

Important Notice: Wolters Kluwer TAA Limited has taken reasonable care in sourcing and presenting the information contained on this site, but accepts no responsibility for any financial or other loss or damage that may result from its use. In particular, users of the site are advised to take appropriate professional advice before committing themselves to involvement in offshore jurisdictions, offshore trusts or offshore investments. © Wolters Kluwer TAA Ltd 2017. All rights reserved.

The Expat Briefing brand is owned and operated by Wolters Kluwer TAA Limited.