The only legal marriage for foreigners in Egypt is a civil ceremony performed at the local marriage court, which is in accordance with Islamic practice. Persons wishing a religious ceremony may arrange for one separately, but it is the civil ceremony that establishes the legal marriage.
Americans wishing to marry in Egypt must take the following steps in order to marry:
Step 1: Make an appointment with the American Citizen Services Unit, U.S. Embassy
Address: 5, Tawfik Diab Street (formerly Latin America Street), Garden City, Cairo.
Please note a notary appointment is required for this service. Demand for notary services is higher than we can accommodate. Please don’t make travel arrangements or commit funds until you have booked your notary appointment.
At American Citizen Services, you will sign a marriage affidavit that will be notarized by the U.S. Embassy. This affidavit includes your biographic data and your religion. Interfaith marriages are permitted by Egyptian law except in the case of a Muslim woman and a non-Muslim man. The affidavit also mentions that you are free to marry and that the Embassy has no objection to the marriage. Please bring the following:
- Your valid American passport
- The fee is $50.00 (cash or credit).
- If you are a minor U.S. citizen less than 18years old, your state law in regards to the permitted age of marriage is applicable.
NOTE: If two American citizens are getting married, they each need separate statements.
Step 2: After obtaining the notarized statement from the U.S. Embassy, you must visit one of the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Authentication Offices.
Addresses: 96 Ahmed Oraby St, Mohandessin, Giza; Sabak Street next to the Maryland Gardens in Heliopolis, Cairo or Awkaf Building, San Stephano, Alexandria.
Hours: Saturday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will certify the statement for a fee.
Step 3: After obtaining the certification from the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, you must visit the Egyptian Ministry of Justice.
Address: Egyptian Ministry of Justice Annex (Office of Marriage of Foreigners), 4th floor, Lazoughly Square, Abdin, Cairo. Open Sunday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
The Ministry of Justice will register your marriage. Forms to be completed at the marriage court can only be obtained on the wedding day or the day before. The following are required:
- Proof of identity (a passport) for both parties, two photocopies of the passport data page, the Egyptian entry visa and the residency stamp (US citizens who bought visas at the airport should approach the Egyptian Immigration Authority in Mogamaa, first floor, registration window no. 54, and get a residency stamp on their passports for no cost before go through marriage procedures).
- Egyptian I.D. (Egyptian passport or the National ID) and two photocopies of it if one of the parties is Egyptian
- Five personal photos for each party.
- Two male witnesses with identification documents (passport or I.D. card) must be present to sign the marriage documents. You are required to bring your own witnesses, such as friends or travel agents.
- Male U.S. citizens marrying Egyptian citizens are required to go to the Main Notary Public Authority, located on 57 Ramses St., Cairo, to obtain an exceptional approval to use the Embassy Affidavit. Affidavits are not accepted in all cases.
- If you are a female of Egyptian origin under the age of 21, you are required to either be accompanied by your father, a guardian, a person in loco parentis, or a written consent from any of the above. The consent should be in English and Arabic. It should be notarized by the Egyptian Embassy or an Egyptian consulate in the U.S. and by the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Egypt.
- Proof of termination of your last marriage is required, if you were married before. An original or certified copy, and translation of the last final divorce decree or death certificate (with the name of late spouse) must be authenticated by the Egyptian Embassy/Consulate in the U.S. and submitted. Please note that if you are a female American citizen previously married, you may only remarry in Egypt at least 90 days after your divorce or 130 days after the death of your former spouse. If you are pregnant, you can only remarry after the birth of the baby.
- A pre-marriage medical examination at a government hospital is required for both parties. Certificates are issue to the parties for submission to the marriage office.
Marriage certificates are issued on the same day by the Ministry of Justice. The marriage certificate must be picked up by one of the parties.
Fees to complete the marriage at the Ministry of Justice:
A fee of LE 175.00 is collected.
Also if both parties are Muslim, an additional fee of point two percent (%0.02) of the dowry is paid.
If both parties are Christians, a dowry is not required, so an additional point two percent (%0.02) of the value of the wedding ring.
To use the marriage certificate in the U.S., it should be translated into English at the Notary Public Authority-located on 57 Ramses Street, Cairo. It takes 1-2 days to receive the translation, which must then be authenticated by the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and authenticated by the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo ($50.00).
Please note: If you do obtain an English marriage certificate from the Egyptian Ministry of Justice Translation office, you DO NOT need to have it authenticated at the American Embassy to use for immigration in the United States.
If you have any questions, please use the U.S. Citizen Services Navigator to contact the American Citizen Services (ACS) unit.
Americans wishing to apply for immigration visas for their spouses must take the following steps:
If you reside in the United States, please start the petition process by filing a Form I-130, “Petition for Alien Relative.” The I-130 is available on the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) website at www.uscis.gov under “Immigration Forms.” Please note: USCIS processes the Form I-130 as a visa number becomes available. Filing and approval of an I-130 is only the first step in helping a spouse immigrate to the United States. The fee is $420 and you may file online or send in the paper application to the appropriate U.S. address (listed on the website).
If you are a resident of Egypt, since August 16, 2011 the Immigration office at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo stopped receiving Form I-130 “Petition for Alien Relative. Form I-130 should be submitted from the U.S.A., and or on line.
For further information, please use the Visa Services Navigator to contact the immigrant Visa Unit.