Everything an expat needs to know about getting married in Dubai. Either you are muslim or non-muslim marriage in Dubai laws are very simple.
Dubai has become a popular place for many Expats to live and work. It has become knowns as one of the safest cities in the world. The city’s climate is warm, they have an excellent school system, the housing options are extensive, and there is freedom of religious and cultural expression. It’s not surprising then many expats are also tying the knot in this wonderful city.
However, there are a lot of regulations when considering getting married as an expat in Dubai.
Pre-marital requirements in Dubai
No matter who you are and what country of origin you have, there are some basic pre-marriage conditions and documents that are requires before you can get married in Dubai which are:
- The brides approval
- The intended’s Emirates IDs
- Valid passports
- Visa status of both parties
- A minimum of one person (groom, bride, or bride’s guardian) in the marriage contract must have a valid UAE residence visa.
- Both the bride and groom must have positive pre-marital health screening certificates. These are issued by DHA primary healthcare centres.
The PHC-pre-marital test is conducted to limit the risk of spreading communicable and inherited diseases and is mandatory.
Marriage requirements for Muslim Expats
The following requirements must be met by Muslim expats who wish to be married in Dubai:
- The groom and bride must be at least 18 years old. However, there is no ban on child marriages in the UAE.
- Therefore, if one or both parties is under 18, a special approval from the judge is required.
- A spouse cannot be twice the age of the other without a judge’s approval.
- The couple must be present.
- Either the bride’s father or his designated proxy must be present at the ceremony.
- Two male and Muslim witnesses must also be present.
- A Muslim woman cannot marry without her legal guardian’s consent.
- If the father of the bride is deceased, her next closest kin must be in attendance (brother or Uncle).
- If a Muslim bride has a non-Muslim father, she must obtain a ‘No Objection’ Certificate from either her consulate or embassy in the UAE.
For the wedding to be considered legal, the marriage contract must be registered in a UAE Sharia court. It is also important to note that in the UAE, polygamy is allowed, but husbands are not allowed to have more than 4 wives and must be able to demonstrate that they can financially provide for all of them.
Marriage requirements for non-Muslim expats
Expats who are not Muslim have slightly different requirements. “Christians are able to get married at one of the many churches in Dubai” says Ernest Peters, a business blogger at Via Writing and Writing populist. All expat couples who get married must register their marriage at their countries respective consulates or embassies. Other requirements are:
- Both be at least 18.
- Have two witnesses for the ceremony.
There may also be additional requirements that need to be satisfied depending on the couple’s embassy or church. In most cases, there are additional documents required such as:
- Passport copies for both the bride and groom
- Valid ID of the witnesses
- The couple’s birth certificates
- Where applicable, proof of divorce or death of previous spouse.
There may be further document requirements that some embassies may ask the couple to fill out, like an application for “intention to marry”.
Who officiates the marriage?
For Muslim ceremonies, marriages in Dubai are conducted by Sharia courts or via authorised marriage officers called Mazoons. For non-Muslim couples, marriages take place at the couple’s consulate or embassy of their country of origin in the UAE or the church or temple of their respective faith.
Can foreigners get married in Dubai?
If they are residents of the UAE and have a valid Emirates ID, then yes, they can get married. “It is, however, not possible to get married if both the groom and the bride are in the UAE with visitor’s visas” says Joe Horner, a travel writer at Best Australian Writers and UK Services Reviews. So, if you are planning on a destination wedding in Dubai, neither of you have residency visas or the bride’s guardian, then you must look elsewhere.
These are the requirements for getting married in Dubai.
Christina Lee is a project manager at Top Canadian Writers and Student writing services. She writes about marketing news and technologies for services, such as Simple Grad, as well as many others.