Formal registration of marriage and of divorce in the Republic of Armenia
The Family Code of the Republic of Armenia states that a marriage requires the mutual consent of a man and a woman. The minimum age for marriage is 18 (eighteen) years for both men and women.
The law prohibits marriage if it is:
- Between persons one of whom is already in a registered marriage;
- Between close relatives as defined by law;
- Between the adopter and the adopted;
- Between persons one of whom is declared incapable by a court decision or decree.
The state registration of a marriage is carried out only in the presence of both parties. The Family Code of the Republic of Armenia prohibits marriage by proxy.
In the Republic of Armenia the registration of marriage is performed in one of the following agencies:
- At the territorial body of the registrar with the certificate of residence;
- At the Chamber of Registration of Marriages and Births, which is part of The Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia.
If the person who wants to marry has no permanent place of residence, then the marriage is registered in the body of the registrar of temporary residence with a certificate from the relevant authority of residence. Soldiers submit a certificate from the military site where they are on duty.
Required documents for the state registration of marriage in the Republic of Armenia:
- By a joint statement. If one of the parties is unable to bring an application for legitimate reasons, the application may be presented on their behalf by a third party, subject to the prior presence of power of attorney. Please note, that the signature of missing person must be certified by a notary office or consular office of the Republic of Armenia in the territory of a foreign state;
- The passports of the bride and the groom;
- The certificate of dissolution of a previous marriage, when appropriate.
The process of determining the married name during the registration of marriage:
The spouses have the right to choose their married name, IE: they can leave their maiden names, may register the name of the other spouse, may leave their name and add the name and surname of the spouse. For example, the groom’s surname is Gevorgyan, the bride’s surname is Petrosyan. The common combined surname will be Gevorgyan-Petrosyan. If one of the spouses already has a double barrel surname, then it cannot be combined with the name and surname of the spouse.
The legal consequences of the state registration of marriage:
In the Republic of Armenia cohabitation, or church and/or religious ceremony does not create any legal relationship for the couple. Only marriage registered at the Registry Office create legal consequences. The property acquired by the spouses during the period of life together is defined as common and/or joint property unless otherwise provided by the legislation of the Republic of Armenia.
Registration of marriage in the Republic of Armenia with a foreign citizen, a stateless person, or a citizen of the Republic of Armenia permanently residing in a foreign country:
The above-mentioned persons may be married at The Registry Office in the Republic of Armenia on the basis of the decision of the relevant department of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia and/or their designated authorities.
Documents required for state registration of marriage with a foreign citizen:
- The joint written statement;
- The certificate proving the absence of a registered marriage in a foreign country, issued by the relevant authority. This certificate must be translated into the Armenian language and certified by a notary office. If a foreign country is not a party to the Hague Convention of 1961, the certificate must be certified by a consular representative. In the case of a relevant international agreement between the Republic of Armenia and a foreign country reference and/or confirmation is not required;
- A document confirming the termination of the previous marriage. This document is subject to the same rules as the rules for a certificate of absence of a registered marriage;
- The copy of their passport and its certified translation (by a notary office).
The time required for the state registration of marriage with a foreign citizen in the territory of the Republic of Armenia:
The resolution on marriage registration is issued by The Department of Civil Registry Office of The Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia within the 10 (ten) day period. After receiving permission, the registration is carried out in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Armenia. An accelerated procedure for registration and/or the implementation of this procedure is available with additional payments for fast-track service. A person is exempt from additional payments if there are valid reasons set out for marriage registration before the legally prescribed term of 10 (ten) days, in the Republic of Armenia.
To register a marriage earlier than the established term of 10 (ten) days, foreign citizens, citizens of the Republic of Armenia and stateless persons, as well as, the Republic of Armenia citizens permanently residing in a foreign country are required to make the following payments:
- For registration within two working days the sum of 150,000 AMD;
- For registration within five working days the sum of 120,000 AMD;
- For registration within seven working days the sum of 90,000 AMD.
The time required for the state registration of divorce in the Republic of Armenia:
A divorce requires a coordinated decision on the termination of family relations by spouses. Divorce in the Republic of Armenia can be registered based on statements by one spouse if and when:
- The other spouse is recognized by the court as missing;
- The other spouse is declared incompetent by the court;
- There is a decision with respect to the other spouse, containing a verdict of imprisonment for a term of no less than three years.
The marriage shall be deemed terminated from the moment of state registration. A divorce can be agreed on only by mutual consent of the spouses. The application for divorce should be submitted together to the public agency registering the civil status acts. If one of the spouses could not attend for valid reasons, he/she is entitled to submit a separate statement certified by a notary office. Dissolution of marriage via the public agency registering the civil status acts in the Republic of Armenia is a common procedure for divorce. Prior to formal registration of divorce, the spouses have the right to withdraw the application for registration of divorce at any time.
The husband has no right to submit an application for divorce during the wife’s pregnancy, without her consent:
The marriage can also be dissolved by a court decree. In the Republic of Armenia, the marriage is dissolved by the court when the spouses have agreed to divorce, yet there is a legal dispute between them arising from this decision. For example, the division of property, alimony issue and the issue of child care. A marriage may also be dissolved by a court decree when the spouses have not reached a mutual agreement on the issue of divorce, IE: if one spouse wants to divorce and the other doesn’t. In such cases, the judicial practice of the Republic of Armenia shows that the court first gives the parties time for reconciliation.
The marriage shall be deemed formally terminated by a court decree from the decision’s date of entry into full force. The divorce is subject to state registration in case of a divorce through the courts and in case of dissolution of marriage at the Civil Registry Office. Divorce registration by a court decree can be made after the entry into full force of the decision of court. In this case, the divorce can be registered by proxy with the participation of a third party.
On what state body registers the dissolution of marriage:
The state registration of dissolution of marriage is exercised by The Registry Office at:
- The place of cohabitation of the spouses;
- The place of residence of either spouse;
- The state organ of The Registry Office at the place where the state registration of marriage took place.
If the spouses do not have a permanent place of residence, the dissolution of marriage may be registered at the Civil Registry Office at the place of temporary residence, on the basis of a certificate issued by the relevant authority at the place of temporary residence.
Documents required for registration of divorce in the Republic of Armenia:
Documents required for state registration of dissolution of marriage:
- The passports of spouses;
- The marriage certificate;
- A joint statement of the couple wishing to divorce, or in cases prescribed by law, the application of one spouse;
- The court decision on divorce that has entered into full force, if and when it was produced in court.
Time required for the state registration of divorce in the Republic of Armenia:
Registration of divorce in the Republic of Armenia is carried out within a period of one to three months. After the registration of divorce each spouse is given a certificate confirming that they are in fact divorced. If the divorce is decreed by a court, the registration of divorce is made after the court decision comes into full force within a period of one to three months, from the date of submission of the application to The Registry Office.
The legal consequences of formal state registration of divorce in the Republic of Armenia:
After the formal registration of divorce, all the legal relationship between spouses ceases to exist. A spouse who changed his/her name at the time of marriage, may leave this name, or change back to their maiden name after the formal termination of the marriage.