The specific requirements for marriage and immigration depend on whether the marriage occurs in Romania or in the United States.
Marriage in the United States (using a K-1 Fiancé Visa):
If your fiancé(e) is not a citizen or legal permanent resident of the U.S. and you plan to get married and reside in the U.S., you must first file an I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé, on behalf of your fiancé(e) with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) Center having jurisdiction over your place of residence. If the petition is approved, your fiancé(e) must then obtain a nonimmigrant fiancé visa (K-1) at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad.
The marriage must take place within 90 days of your fiancé(e) entering the U.S. If the marriage does not take place within 90 days, your fiancé(e) will be required to leave the U.S. It is not possible to obtain an extension of stay in this category.
Following your marriage, in order to continue to live and work in the U.S., your fiancé(e) must apply with USCIS to become a legal permanent resident. Please use this link to the USCIS website to access forms and more information about filling the I-129F petition.
Note: Your fiancé(e) may enter the U.S. only one time with a fiancé(e) visa. If your fiancé(e) leaves the country before you are married, your fiancé(e) will not be allowed back into the U.S. without a new visa.
Marriage in Romania
Romanian documentary requirements for foreigners wishing to marry a Romanian citizen in Romania:
The Government of Romania legally recognizes only civil marriage ceremonies that are performed in the City Hall in the area where the Romanian citizen resides. Many couples also choose to hold a religious ceremony after the completion of the civil ceremony.
The documents generally required from the U.S. citizen for marriage in Romania generally include the following:
- Original birth certificate or certified copy of the birth certificate, accompanied by a Romanian translation of the birth certificate obtained from a Romanian Notary Public’s office. U.S. birth certificates must be authenticated with an Apostille as shown below.
- Official certification about your status or eligibility to marry and about the marriage laws of your state or country of residence. In the United States there is no such government-issued document and no central authority for marriage registration. Therefore, the U.S. embassy or consulate cannot make any official certification about the marital status or eligibility to marry of persons residing in the United States who wish to get married in Romania. U.S. citizens may request a “No Record of Marriage Certificate”, “Letter of Single Status” or a “Certificate of Non-Impediment” to marriage. Depending on the state of residence, the document may be issued by different levels of government: State (Department of Health, Office of Vital Statistics) or County (County Clerk, Court or State Registrar). Unfortunately, in the United States a national certificate is not available.
- Prenuptial Certificate (Health Certificate) obtained from a clinic in the Romanian city/town where your marriage will take place.
- Proof of termination of any previous marriages, original or certified copy, with a translation in Romanian (i.e. Divorce/Annulment Decree, Death Certificate). If your previous marriage took place in Romania and the divorce decree was issued in another country, you may need to obtain recognition of your foreign divorce decree in Romania through a local court before getting remarried in Romania. For information on this process you should consult an Attorney.
A complete list of documents needed by the Mayor’s Office to authorize marriage may be obtained from the local City Hall in Romania.
Please note that ALL public documents issued or obtained in the U.S. must be authenticated for use in Romania with an Apostille certificate. The apostille certificate must be affixed to the document by a competent U.S. authority. Each state has a competent authority (generally it is the office of the Secretary of State in the state where the document was issued). For additional information and a list of competent authorities, please use the following link: http://www.hcch.net/en/states/authorities/details3/?aid=353 to the website of the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents.
In order to enter the U.S. to reside following a marriage in Romania, your foreign spouse must obtain an immigrant visa. You should first file an I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on behalf of your spouse with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) Center having jurisdiction over your place of residence. If the petition is approved, your spouse must then obtain an immigrant visa (IR-1 or CR-1) at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Please visit the website of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for the forms, required supporting documentation and information on where to file them. The processing time for these petitions varies among Service Centers and also can depend on the circumstances of the individual case.
If you want your spouse to enter the United States before USCIS finishes processing the I-130 and an immigrant visa is issued, you may file an I-129F petition to enable your spouse to apply for a K-3 nonimmigrant visa. For information about K-3 visas please visit the USCIS website. It normally takes eight to twelve weeks from the time the petition is filed with USCIS until this Embassy receives notice of approval for a K-3 petition.
How to Obtain an Immigrant Visa for Your New Spouse
If you wish to file an I-130 petition for your wife after marriage, please click here for the filing procedure.