Picking a color theme for your reception pales in comparison to the questions of where to live; which visas to arrange and what to do if things go wrong.
If you have found your dream partner and are considering tying the knot, consider our tips to help you along the way.
WHAT DO YOU WANT?
Before you get engaged and make a commitment, ask yourself whether you’re really looking for a long-term partner or just want someone to go to the movies with and know there’s nothing wrong with the latter. After all, online dating is the perfect way to meet someone to discuss the plot with and hopefully they’ll explain what happened when you ducked out for more popcorn. If you’re sure you want a long term partner and this is “the one”, we couldn’t be happier for you.
TAKE YOUR TIME
Getting married is the biggest decision of your life so it is very important that you take your time to get to know your partner before you decide to tie the knot. Meeting your perfect someone online is absolutely fantastic but give your relationship time to grow and mature before you decide whether or not you want to spend the rest of your life with this person. If it really is true love, waiting a few months or a year to get to know each other shouldn’t diminish your love for each other at all. So don’t impulsively jump into a marriage. Take your time, get better acquainted and if it is meant to be, you have a wonderful life to look forward to together.
If you are in love and ready to get married, you probably know your partner really well already. However, it never hurts to have a little extra information, especially if you are in two minds.
- You can hire a company to do a full background check on your partner. Most people usually do this to ensure the person they are marrying isn’t a criminal of some sort.
- The US Sex Offender database is useful too as it lists any person who may have a criminal record for a sexual offence. So if John Smith has been arrested for sex crime previously and you search for John Smith in the database, you should be able to find the details and it is a good way to look before you leap. In other countries, these services are usually not available to the public but the police should be able to help you out.
- If financial stability is important, you can ask to see their credit report. Sometimes this information is covered in the background check as well.
- If you are planning to immigrate to your partner’s country, we assume the immigration process will be very thorough and should ideally provide you with more information about your future partner. For more details, please get in touch with the embassy of the relevant country.
Meeting and marrying someone from the same town usually does not pose this problem but for long distance relationships, this is one of the most important questions you need to ask because you can’t be married and living in two different places.
If you are within the same country, then it’s just a matter of deciding who will move, depending on your circumstances. Consider work, standard of living, and any other issues that may be important to you before you make a decision.
If you are marrying someone from overseas, decisions about where to live can be complicated and need careful consideration. In the majority of cases, women move to the man’s country but it doesn’t always have to be this way. If your partner is moving to your country, consider all immigration laws before bringing them over. Most countries will grant them a legal status but sometimes this can take a few months to finalize so make sure you’re doing everything right.
Marrying a foreign national means you will have to abide by certain immigration rules and arrange for the right visa so your partner can be with you. While a tourist visa will allow them to visit you, it will be only be for a limited time. Most countries have other visa options for spouses.
- Fiancée Visa – Allows a foreign national entry into a country for the purpose of marrying a citizen of the host country. There are usually conditions attached to the class of visa that require you to prove that you genuinely intend to marry your fiancé(e) within a specified time limit from the date you are granted a visa, and that you intend to then live with your partner as their spouse. Once you marry your spouse will probably have a 1 or 2 year probationary period before permanent residency is granted.
- Spouse Visa – Allows a foreign national who is married to a citizen of the host country to enter the host country as the wife or husband of the sponsor. You will have to provide evidence that you have married and that you intend to remain together as a genuine husband and wife. Your spouse will probably have a 1 or 2 year probationary period before permanent residency is granted.
For more country specific information, take a look at some of these websites or get in touch with the immigration department of your country. Alternatively you can ask a registered migration agent or an immigration lawyer for advice.
- US Info – Information on spouse visas on the U.S. Department of State website.
- UK Info – UK spouse visa information on the UK Border Agency website.
- Australia Info – The Department of Immigration and Citizenship highlights requirements for a spouse visa.
- Canada Info – Information from the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website.
WHERE TO GET MARRIED
Making a decision about where to get married is more than just picking a venue for your reception; especially if you and your partner are from different countries and are planning an overseas wedding.
If you and your partner are from different countries, you need to decide which country you want to get married in. Apart from your personal preferences, you should make sure your wedding plans meet the legal requirements of the country is which the ceremony takes place.
No matter where you get married, don’t forget to check that the marriage is legally accepted in your home country/country of residence. As long as a marriage is legally recognized, you can get married wherever the two of you choose.