Germany Marriage Laws

Germany Outline

Congratulations! If you've found yourself at this page it is likely that you are either planning to be married or have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in Germany. The information provided below will walk you through the steps one must follow to become a minister and perform a valid wedding ceremony in Germany.

1 How to Become an Ordained Minister in Germany

If you haven't already, you should get ordained online with the Universal Life Church. Ordination is free and can be completed in just a matter of minutes. Thousands of legally valid marriages are performed by ULC ministers around the world every year. Begin the process by clicking the big blue button below!

2 How to Officiate a Marriage in Germany

Next, you should contact the office of your local marriage authority. Let them know that you are a minister who was ordained online with the Universal Life Church, and ask what they will require of you to officiate a legal marriage.

3 License to Marry in Germany

After you've contacted your marriage authority, you should visit our online store to purchase whatever documentation will be required. We typically advise ministers in Germany to get an Ordination Package. Please note that the Universal Life Church offers an international FedEx shipping option that will allow you to receive your ministerial products anywhere in Germany. Additionally, please attempt to leave at least 1 month between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials well in-advance of the big day.

4 How to Perform a Wedding in Germany

Now that you've done all of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! While several ministers of the Universal Life Church have registered and acted as wedding celebrants in Germany, the Universal Life Church's legal standing there is not as firm as it is in the United States and elsewhere.We are actively seeking stronger recognition, however, and would appreciate you contacting us if you think you could be of service in this regard.

At the Universal Life Church we receive several calls from wedding officiants in the Germany, after they've received their license to marry by getting ordained online, asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony. Once the legal matters have been taken care of, officiating a wedding (while a sometimes-daunting task) can be a great deal of fun. We would suggest that new U.K. wedding ministers concerned about the ceremony peruse one of our helpful wedding guides. The minister training section of our website should offer a helpful refresher for more experienced ministers.

Germany Flag

Germany Marriage Code

Marriage in Germany is governed by Germany's central government and is quite simple. All marrying couples must participate in a civil wedding in the Standesamt (a local magistrate's office). Many couples also elect to have a more traditional symbolic ceremony in a cathedral after their civil ceremony. As noted, the Universal Life Church is not currently a recognized religious denomination in Germany, but assuming a couple has been wed in the Standesamt there is nothing preventing a ULC Minister from conducting a symbolic ceremony elsewhere. If you think you could aid us in this regard, please contact our central office. Be aware that same-sex marriages (in the form of civil unions) are legal in Germany.
If there is to be a more traditional wedding it must take place after the civil ceremony. Germany has many magnificent cathedrals, palaces and castles that offer wedding arrangements. There are agencies in most larger cities that will rent out the clothing necessary for the wedding; not only for the groom and ushers, but also, what was once but rarely seen in America, for the bride and bridesmaids. Wedding coaches, drawn by four white horses, are also available as well as antique cars, limousines and the like.

View the Germany Statutes on the official state site
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