Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Native American Law for California

Q: Can other countries see if I have been married before if I want to get married Abroad?

is places like usa, Hawaii and new Zealand able to see if you have been married before if you are a foreigner and want to get married in one of those countries ?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Native American Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: The short answer is yes, other countries, including the USA (and Hawaii, which is part of the USA), and New Zealand, can generally find out if you have been married before, even if you are a foreigner wanting to get married in one of those countries.

When you apply for a marriage license in a foreign country, that country will likely require you to provide proof of your eligibility to marry. This typically involves providing documentation such as your birth certificate, passport, and if applicable, proof of the termination of any prior marriages (e.g., a divorce decree or death certificate of a former spouse).

Many countries, including the USA and New Zealand, have processes in place to verify the information you provide when applying for a marriage license. They may communicate with the authorities in your home country or country of previous marriage to confirm the authenticity of the documents you've provided and to verify your marital status.

Furthermore, if you have been married in the USA before, that marriage would be a matter of public record. Any interested party, foreign or domestic, could potentially access those records.

It's important to be truthful about your marital history when applying to marry abroad. Failure to disclose a prior marriage could be considered marriage fraud and could lead to serious legal consequences, both in the foreign country and potentially in your home country.

If you have specific questions about your situation, it's best to consult with the embassy or consulate of the country where you wish to marry, and potentially also with a lawyer familiar with international family law.

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