So, I went down to the local "Hochzeitbüro" aka, the Wedding Office. It's in a building just behind the central building in Munich that is used for getting your resident's permit, registering where you live, changing your name, applying for work visas, registering any extra toes, etc etc. Okay, not the extra toes, but if you have paperwork to be done in Munich, this is likely the place you have to go to get it done.
The Wedding Office building is slightly nicer than the building I'm normally in. The front building has a bit of a smoky, grimy atmosphere to it. The back building is nicer and there's a reason for this. They hold the actual wedding ceremonies here. But it's not that nice, it's still very much an office building. I saw a few people mingling around the front who were obviously part of a wedding, right clothes, several bouquets of red roses. They were standing near a kiosk where you can buy softdrinks and chocolate bars. Now, I'm no old-fashioned romantic, but that didn't really strike me as how I wanted my guests to entertain themselves before or after the ceremony. But I digress.
The reason I went down there was to see what was necessary for an Australian and a Canadian to wed in Germany. I'll give you one guess as to whether it's lots of paperwork or just a little..... thinking hard?.... Good guess! I have smart readers; it's not just a little. Here's a list of what we need:
- A birth certificate, not older than 6 months and translated into German by an official translator.
- A current passport (okay, this is not a difficulty, I admit)
- Proof of residency in Munich
- Proof of job status, including the original certificates for any degrees held.
- A piece of paper (paper A) that says we don't need another piece of paper (paper B). Paper B would be a signed statement or certificate, I don't know which, saying that we were free to marry.
- G need to provide proof of his single status, a certificate being issued less than 6 months ago. Don't ask me for details on what this is, I forget right now.
- G possibly needs a "Ehebedenklichkeitsbescheinigung". Yes, that is one word. No, I don't know what it means, other than it talks about marriage (ehe) and a certificate (bescheinigung). It's in brackets, so it's possible he doesn't need that.
- Happy news, we don't need an intrepreter for the ceremony. See, learning German has finally paid off.
- G needs an Apostille to sign for all the documents from Australia, and I need "legalisation" for my documents from Canada. Apparently it's not enough that you have the official documents and certificates, someone even more official has to stamp and say they are official.
- I need to fill out an affidavit saying I'm not related to G by blood or by marriage.
So, after we get all that done, we can register to marry. Phew!
Of course, for nearly all these papers, there's going to be some sort of charge. And don't forget the translations either. I'm starting to wonder if a quick trip to Las Vegas wouldn't be cheaper. Well, maybe not really, but a little. I think I might check out how difficult it is in Austria, since it's just a hop away. If it's significantly easier, it might be worth a shot.