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Citizenship and Marriage

Marriage to a citizen is one way for an alien to obtain citizenship in some countries. Questions about the requirements and processes of marrying and obtaining citizenship are welcome here.

12,525 Questions
Citizenship and Marriage
Age of Consent & Underage Relationships
Marriage Licenses

How old do you have to be to get married in the US or a US Territory?

The best time to get married is when you are mentally and financially capable of supporting a family. I know it sounds like old school. However, lots of marriages fall apart because of the lack of time available because people spend a lot of time working on their careers when they marry young and don't have time to spend on each other; there are exceptions to this. However the point is, get married when you have everything sorted out. It is best for you, your partner and everyone concerned.

In America it's usually at 18. Most states, however, allow marriage at a younger age with parental and/or judicial consent. Some states allow marriage at a still younger age if the female is pregnant. There are a few states (Nebraska, 19; Mississippi, 21) that have a higher age.

For example, the age of consensual sex in Alabama is 16 for Male/Female. However there are many laws that have to be explored on this as well, in many states this law is only applicable if each party is within a few months to no more than two years of each others age.

If you are considering marriage before the age of 18 then you will have to have a parent's consent (or legal guardian with proof that person is "legal" guardian)

Legal Guardian is defined as...

A person who has the legal responsibility for providing the care and management of a person who is incapable, either due to age (very young or even very old, or to some other physical, mental or emotional impairment, of administering his or her own affairs. In the case of a minor child, the guardian is charged with the legal responsibility for the care and management of the child and of the minor child's estate. A legal guardian will be under the supervision of the court and will be required to appear in court to give periodic reports about the status of the child and its estate.

Other situations - Pregnant Teens: Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland and Oklahoma allow pregnant teens or teens who have already had a child to get married without parental consent. In Florida, Kentucky, and Oklahoma, the young couple must have authorization from a court. Maryland requires that the minor be at least 16. Even with parental approval, many states will require court approval when a person is 16 years of age or less.

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Citizenship and Marriage
El Salvador

Does an illegal alien from El Salvador become a legal resident or citizen by marrying a US citizen?

No, an alien or immigrant, legal or otherwise, does not become a citizen automatically upon marriage to a citizen. There is a process of applying, processing and (hopefully) eventual approval by the Federal government. First is Permanent Residency status ("Green card"). Then there's a wait of 3 years or more - depending on situation - for citizenship qualification. The website for the agency which handles this process is: USCIS.GOV

An illegal alien does not automatically become a citizen by marrying one. However, certain illegal aliens can get permanent residence status (often called the "green card") by marrying a US citizen. If the person originally entered the United States legally but overstayed his or her visa, than it is possible for him or her to "adjust status" to that of a permanent resident (i.e. get a "green card") if the US citizen fills out a series of petitions including one that proves that the US citizen can financially support the alien. If the alien entered illegally into the United States without any visa or permit, than that person cannot "adjust status" and has to leave the country before obtaining a green card. If the person was illegally in the country for more than a year, than he or she is barred from ever coming back for 10 years (known as the "10-year-bar") The only way to overcome having the 10-year-bar is by the US citizen spouse filing a petition for a waiver of the bar. The petition has to prove that it would cause extreme and exceptional hardship to him or her to move to his or her spouse's country. Only three years after the person has the green card can they apply for citizenship, and they must still be married to the original citizen who got the green card.

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Job Interviews
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
Education

Does anyone have a list of questions asked during the greencard interview for marriage?

Some questions that may be asked are:

Name and address.

Name and Date of Birth of Spouse.

When and where did you meet your spouse?

Describe this 1st meeting.

Did you make arrangements to meet again?

Did you exchange phone numbers?

When did you meet next?

Where were you living at the time? Where was your spouse living?

When did you decide to get married? Where were you at the time?

Did you live together before marriage?

When and where did you get married? How did you and your spouse get to the church, courthouse, etc.?

Who were the witnesses to the ceremony?

Did you exchange wedding rings?

Where had you purchased these rings? Did you and your spouse purchase them together?

Did you have a reception after the ceremony?

Where was it held?

Do you have any photos of the ceremony and /or reception?

Describe the reception.

Did any of your, and your spouse's, family members attend? If so, who?

Did you go on a honeymoon? If so, when and where?

If you did not have a reception, what did you do after the wedding ceremony?

Where did you live after the wedding?

Describe the place where you lived right after the marriage. Number of bedrooms and bathrooms; furnishings; color of walls, floor coverings, appliances, etc; type of air conditioning, heating, etc; # of telephones, televisions, etc. Do you have cable television?

Where did you get the furniture? Was it already there, did you buy it, was it a gift, or did it come from your, or your spouse's, previous residence?

If brought to the house or apartment, describe how it was transported.

Describe your bedroom. Where do you keep your clothes? Where does your spouse keep his or her clothes? Where are the bathroom towels kept? Where do you keep the dirty clothes?

Where is the garbage kept in the kitchen?

On what day of the week is the garbage picked up?

Where do you shop for groceries? Do you go together with your spouse? How do you get there?

Where do you work? What days of the week do you work?

What hours do you work? What is your salary?

What is your telephone # at work?

When was the last vacation you had from work?

Did you and your spouse go anywhere together at that time?

When was the last vacation you and your spouse took together?

Where did you go? How did you get there? Describe it.

Where does your spouse work? What days of the week? What hours? What is the salary, if you know?

What is your spouse's telephone # at work?

When was the last time your spouse got a vacation from work?

Do you or your wife have any scars or tattoos? If so, where on the body?

Do you know your spouse's family members? If so, which ones? If your spouse has children from a previous marriage, their names, ages, where they live, and where they go to school, if applicable.

Where do you live now? (If different from where you lived right after the marriage, then go over the same questions as above). How much is the rent? When is it paid? How do you pay it?

Do you have a bank account together? Where? What kind of account? (Checking, savings).

Are both of you listed on the account? (Do you have a bank letter, cancelled checks, etc.?)

Did you file a joint tax return this year? Do you have a copy with you?

Do you own any property together? What property? Did you bring copies of the documents with you?

What kind of automobile do you and your spouse have? Describe them.

Do you have an insurance policy listing your spouse as the beneficiary? If so, do you have a copy?

Have you taken any trips or vacations together? Do you have photos from these trips?

Do you have any utility bills, or receipts from items you have purchased together?

What other documentation do you have to show that you are living together as husband and wife?

Do you have any pets? What kind, what are their names, and describe them?

What did you do for Christmas, New Year's, your anniversary, or you or your spouse's last birthday? Did you exchange gifts? If so, what kind of gift?

Did you or your spouse go to work yesterday? If so, at what time did you and/or your spouse leave the house and return?

Who cooks the meals at the house?

What is your spouse's favorite food? What is your favorite food?

Does your spouse drink coffee? If so, does he or she use cream and/or sugar?

Did you eat dinner together last night? Did anyone else have dinner with you? What did you have?

What time was dinner served? Who cooked it?

Did you watch TV after dinner? What shows did you watch?

At what time did you go to bed? Who went to bed first?

Did you have the air conditioning or heater on?

Who woke up first this morning? Did an alarm clock go off?

Did you or your spouse take a shower?

Did you come to the interview together? Who drove?

Did you have breakfast? Where and what did you eat?

Basically, they are questions asked of you and your spouse and differences in answers will send up a red flag that will get the illegal deported and you persecuted.

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Law & Legal Issues
Citizenship and Marriage

Can a natural born us citizen have his citizenship revoked against his will?

The law prohibits the taking of your citizenship against your will, but there are certain actions a citizen can take which are classed to be a free-will decision that constitutes renunciation of their citizenship. Which means if you commit these such acts you are willfully aggreeing to the loss of your citizenship.

The ways to lose your natural born US citizenship are detailed in 8 USC 1481:

1.Becoming naturalized in another country.

2.Swearing an oath of allegiance to another country.

3.Serving in the armed forces of a nation at war with the U.S., or if you are an officer in that force.

4.Working for the government of another nation if doing so requires that you become naturalized or that you swear an oath of allegiance to that country.

6.Being convicted of committing treason.

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Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
Canada

Is it difficult for US citizens to relocate and seek employment in Canada?

American Immigrants to CanadaThis info is from the citizenship and immigration Canada website.

If you want to be a permanent resident, there's a point system where you have to score high enough. Having a college education is a lot of points; grad school is more. There are points for speaking English and French. There are also points for having job skills, and a chart tells you what skills are worth how many points.

There's also a skilled worker program where you can get into Canada to work indefinitely. You have to have $9,500 for one person (that's Canadian dollars) and $12,000 for two people - there's a chart. This is to prove you can support yourself for six months, and I think you don't have to have the money if you have a job offer. You'd also have to qualify in terms of job skills.

  • My granddaughter has lived in Whistler BC for several years now. She has worked as a waitress, etc. but was not allowed to work long because she had no work visa. She finally married a Canadian citizen and got a visa.
  • You can "visit" Canada for six months without working. I would use the time to look for employment. Once you have a job offer, you can apply for immigrant status as a "skilled worker." See the official Canadian immigration site, www.cic.gc.ca
  • I strongly suggest that you contact a Canadian Immigration office for official and ACCURATE information regarding emigrating to Canada. I am an American who lived in Canada for 11 years. Because I am married to a Canadian, my immigration situation was a bit different, but I can say without a doubt that "landed immigrant" does NOT denote someone who owns land...it is simply a formal designation of immigrant status, much like our "alien" status here in the U.S. You are not required to own land to be granted permanent residence status in Canada. However, what with NAFTA and probable subsequent rulings on immigration, I am sure that the requirements change frequently. Therefore, do not rely on possible internet misinformation, contact either the Canadian Embassy here or an Immigration office in any major Canadian city for accurate current information and requirements.
  • Bottom line, it's not hard for a US Citizen to relocate to Canada if a) They have a job there. b) They are highly qualified in a desirable field. c) They have family members or friends in Canada willing to sponsor them. or d) They have spent at least 2 years attending a secondary or post-secondary school in CA, or working there. Canada welcomes hardworking immigrants especially if they are skilled and speak one (or both) of the official languages - English and French. Permanent resident status can lead to citizenship after 3 years. There are basically four ways to become a permanent resident: The Business-class Immigrant owns or plans to own a business in Canada. They have capital of at least $800,000CAD and will invest at least $400,000 CAD in a business once they arrive. There is also a self-employed individual program, which applies primarily to professional athletes and artists with works of cultural significance. The Skilled Worker program is probably your best bet. It extends permanent residence to people who have a job in CA. It also extends PR status to some people in highly skilled occupations that are in demand, to look for work. Skilled occupations include farming, high tech, and hospitality industry positions, among others. You must have at least $10,000 CAD per person to support yourself while you relocate. See the official Canadian Immigration website below for details, and an online quiz to qualify. The Family-class Immigrant has family members willing to sponsor them in Canada. Before you spend money on an expensive immigration lawyer, check out the official Canadian Govt. immigration website at www.cic.gc.ca, and spend a few weeks -- or months-- in the Province of your choice as a visitor. Who knows, you may even find a job while you're visiting.
  • Congratulations for a most accurate and concise answer about Americans coming to Canada to live and work. I can't think of anything to add to your post, except that I wish more Americans would FOLLOW your advice, instead of simply assuming that they can "drop in and get a job " in Canada without any kind of Canadian Government paperwork or investigation of their background or education, as if they were moving from Ohio to Michigan.
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Citizenship and Marriage
Spain

What age can you take citizenship in Spain?

You can be a Spanish citizen at any age.

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Relationships
Citizenship and Marriage
Hamsters
The Veronicas

Is it more important 'to be in love with' or 'to love' each other?

Love If it's that important there isn't much spontaneity to it.And that expression one always hears"I fell in love with him" or "I settled down". Listen to those words. It's as if admitting you fell flat on your face for this person before you even knew them well enough and then you "settled". Don't ever settle for someone who thinks they are in love with you or you with them. Find out what love really is. That takes 2 or 3 divorces. No, just joking. It just takes time.But don't put so much importance to it and it will happen all by itself. Some people are just in love with the fact of being in love; so I suppose the answer to your question would have to be just to love each other and remember there are only a few soulmates for you in this entire world. Never use the word love loosely. I hate people who say "Well, I've been in love about 7 or 8 times now.I don't know. I guess I just quit counting."No, they just quit caring about what the word really means.

Here are opinions from WikiAnswers Contributors:

  • I think it is important to have both. If a man says he loves you but isn't in love with you that would almost be like him being a family member (father, brother, uncle). If a man says he loves you and is in love with you then you have a great guy.
  • I'm married and have told my husband that I love him but am not in love with him. Yes, I'm guilty, but it means I love him really to a point. But when I look into his eyes, I don't get watery eyed or feel up with emotion. He is the father of my children, he is good to me and my family loves him as do I. But in love means passion, just really heart felt love. Think of him and smile. I don't get that. I'm working on indirectly showing or telling him what to do to get me to that point. To be honest, someone in the past has that torch.
  • To be in love describes the excitement, passion, and sense of worth that a person experiences when they are involved with someone. It is a personal experience. To love someone means that you give them care, concern, friendship and affection willingly. You respect them, understand that they are as human as you and do make mistakes, but that they are a good, capable, responsible person whom you enjoy spending time with. Your affection does not wane with distance, and you do not grow bored of them with time. Neither do you idealize them.
  • To love: is to care about someone in ways that you devote yourself to that person. To be in love: is to feel your hart beating because you are attracted (phiscally or spiritually) to that person. I think the question is: Is loving someone enough to be in a relationship or people need to have both? I don't think there is a yes-no answer to this. The true test of love is when your partner is willing to do anything for your happiness (and viceversa).. even staying with that person for the rest of your life even if you want something else (this however, is against love towards yourself -selfesteem-).
  • In order to be in love, you have to first love the person. Being in love is a heightened unexplainable level of love. I don't see how a marriage could be worthwhile, and be something of worth if your not in love. So to answer the question you would have to have both. Because love gets you through the hard times, and being in love makes the easy or happy times that much greater.
  • You need to be in love for yourself and for your partner's sake. You can love someone deeply, but how will you explain yourself how you feel about someone else if everytime you see them your heart jumps, your cheeks burn, your lips smile. If this someone is not your partner then, what's the point? Darling, give yourself, and your partner, the chance to feel this for someone else, and know this someone else feels the same, and live life to the full, for God wants us to love deeply and not fool ourselves: fall in love, be in love.
  • The way you put it, it seems that 'to be in love with' someone is infatuation. Infatuation is always temporary. It's when you feel like you need to be with someone, like they're the only person you could ever be with, and you can't stop thinking about them. When you love someone, that means you care about them more than you care about yourself. Love is more important.
  • Here is the deal. The real deal. You will NEVER meet someone that you will be IN LOVE with all of the time. People just don't do that. In relationships that people have been married for 50 years they will tell you, they were in and out of love. They NEVER stopped loving each other, but they were not always IN LOVE. That isn't reality. We just aren't built that way. You get in a relationship were you are in love with someone all of the time. Could you imagine that? It would be soo unhealty. We just fall in and out of love with someone, and that is OK. It's not bad. It doesn't mean we cheat, it just means we are human.
Answer

Love is an action. It requires daily upkeep that cannot fail. In a marriage relationship, love is what binds two together; it brings out the best and the worst. Love cannot fail. Feelings of love are like wind that are here today and wrap you in a whirlwhind of passion but tomorrow is gone. Love must be steadier than that. It must be an anchor in a wild and stormy sea that will hold tight and never let go. Which love would you prefer? To share a love that is here today or gone tomorrow? Or would you prefer a love that lasts the ages. To be "in love" with someone can change. The one you are "in love" with can have good and bad feelings about life every day. One minute happy-the next minute sad or angry. When someone is sad or angry, is it hard to "be in love with them" at that moment? probably. But "To love one another" never fails. It loves regardless of the situation, time, or moment. It loves constantly. That love is patient, kind, it does not envy or boast. It is not proud or rude or self seeking. It is not easily angered and that love keeps no record of wrongs. It always protects, trusts, hopes, perseveres. That love never fails. Which would you prefer? To have changing feelings? Or a love that never fails...

Answer

I think that they're both equal. To be 'in love' and 'to love' are slightly different, but both are important just the same. You love your family and friends, but you could be in love someone. That doesn't make the people you love inferior or less important, or vise versa.

Both are Importent However It is better to love each other because very simply you could Be Infatuated with that person. now if married both are Importent. But the partner should love you for who you are and view you as a Man a mortal man or woman . But you should love each other More because outside Influence should not play a role in relationships also known as monday mourning quarterbacks.

Answer

I think you have to "fall in love" with the person first. It DOES take, sometimes, a long time to find a true love...not just a romantic love where it can change with the wind but a true love that does involve passion, romance, makes your heart flip, your world brighter, you think of them always and would do anything for them. A true love is unselfish, caring, respectful, and trusting and when you have that foundation to start with you have a much stronger bond. You end up being "in love with" and "loving" that person for everything that they are, faults and all. I "settled" before and thought I was "in love" but it didn't last. I loved that person as a person but the "in love" was not present and the relationship did not last. Once you have met your true love, your soulmate, both kinds of love are present and it is absolutely wonderful. You will look back and realize that you didn't know what love was at all! At least not the kind of love that is real, true, and long lasting. The kind of love that gets you through anything together. So, my opinion is, you have to be "in love" and "love" the person in order to experience real happiness and long-lasting marriage or relationship.

well it takes balence!! not one more than the other.... too much of anything isn't good!! :]

289290291
Citizenship and Marriage

If you marry a legal alien while her visa is current what will it take to make her a citizen?

If she entered the US with a visa and then overstayed that visa, she can adjust status to that of permanent resident without leaving the United States.

AnswerYou will need to file for adjustment of status. You can download a packet of all forms you need at www.uscis.gov AnswerAssuming that you are both in the USA legally, it will take you:

* several days to weeks to fill and file all the forms and send them to the USCIS

* 4-8 weeks to get the invitation for an interview (in the mean time she will have to go to give biometric )

* 4-8 weeks from getting the invitation to the interview

* 2-6 weeks to get the green card in the mail.

All in all 4-6 months.

Note that all of the above concern changing her visa from a temporary one to a permanent resident (green card) visa. In order to become a citizen, one must first obtain a green card, then must undergo the naturalization process.

In the case of someone married to a US citizen, the spouse must be a permanent resident for 5 years, then follow a series of classes (and some paperwork) to become a fully naturalized US citizen.

293294295
Citizenship and Marriage
Visas - Document

How long can a person stay in the US without needing a visa if you are from another country?

If you enter through the Visa Waiver Program, a person can stay in the U.S. for a non-extendable 90 days.

289290291
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration

How does immigration affect society in the us?

before you get this conclusion, you should know what made the USA, the history of American immigration.

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Citizenship and Marriage
Dual Citizenship

Can you have citizenship to three countries?

YES

For more information and some examples visit the related link.

285286287
Divorce and Marriage Law
Emancipation and Ages for Moving Out
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration

What are the legal requirements to marry a US citizen for a foreign person in the US on a visa permit?

Marriage requirements are the same for all people. Immigration status has no bearing on your right to marry. As long as you are not currently married and are over 18 years old, you should be able to obtain a marriage license. If you are not in the United States and you want to come to marry an American, than you will need to apply for a fiancee visa.

Note however, that if you want to apply for a green card through marriage in the U.S. after the wedding, you shouldn't be on a visitors visa, since otherwise you will have to prove that you did not enter the U.S. with an intent to get married.

274275276
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
Green Cards

How long does a Chinese citizen with US green card have to be in the US per year?

If he wants to KEEP a green card, he must live in the U.S. 6 months out of every year, although extensions are possible (such extensions are granted at the discretion of USCIS, you do NOT have a right to an extension)

Another answer

On the USCIS website, under "International Travel as a Permanent Resident," it says essentially:

  1. The rule of thumb is that if you are out of the country for over than a year, they may question whether you intended to make the US your permanent residence.
  2. Shorter trips may still be a problem, if they don't think you were intending to make the US your permanent country of residence. Under those circumstances, they may consider evidence such as family and community ties in the US, maintaining US employment, filing US income taxes, keeping a US mailing address and bank accounts, owning property or running a business in the US, maintaining a valid US driver's license, etc.
  3. Trips of six months or more may disrupt continuous residency for naturalization purposes, but there are ways around that.

That page also mentions requirements of foreign countries (visas, etc.), requirements for reentry into the US, longer trips, etc.

271272273
Citizenship and Marriage
Law & Legal Issues
Immigration

Can non US citizen be buried in the US?

Within limits yes; the body must undergo testing to ensure that it carries no communicable diseases.

269270271
Citizenship and Marriage
Dual Citizenship

Does your marriage in Brazil valid in US?

If 2 Brazilians get married in Brazil, then yes. If two United States citizens want to get married in Brazil but want to continue to live in the United States, they will need to go to a U.S. government website that specifies what is needed to make the marriage valid in the United States as well as in Brazil.

265266267
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration

How many illegal immigrants came to Australia in 2009?

3

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Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration

Can an illegal immigrant get a state id in Wisconsin?

no it can not

245246247
Divorce and Marriage Law
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration

Can a US citizen legally marry a person who is in the country with a tourist visa?

Yes, even two non-citizens with visas can get married. Just bring your visa and passport to the county courthouse and register for a lisense.

------

You can get married, but you cant have the status of the non-immigrant adjusted if you get married in the USA without going through the proper K1 Visa process.

Here is information on how to obtain a K1 Fiancee Visa

http://fianceek1visa.blogspot.com/

www.visajourney.com

241242243
Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
Green Cards

How long can a person with a 'greencard' stay outside the US without risking their legal status?

You can stay out of the US for up to 6 months with no consequence, as long as the person has a vaild green card and passport. Over 6 months contact with the US consulate is needed and the green card holder can stay out of the country for up to a year. Over a year the green card holder will forfeit their green card and not be allowed to re-enter the country. * The US permanent resident CAN stay out of the country for more than a year if they apply for and are granted a re-entry permit by USCIS prior to leaving the country. However, for a PR to become a citizen, he/she must have 5 years of continuous residency and staying abroad for more than a year will typically break it regardless of whether a re-entry permit is issued/used.

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Citizenship and Marriage

Does marriage make you a US citizen?

No. You first have to go thru the permanent resident 'green card' process. Then you have to go thru the citizenship process.

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Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
Passport Requirements

You are a Canadian citizen visiting US Do you need to return to Canada to marry a US Citizen?

If you are talking about getting married in Canada, then no paperwork is needed. In the US a fiancee's visa, which takes four months to get, is required.

Answernope.. you can get married but you won't be able to work. I AM LEGALLY married to an American man and i am Canadian. I got married to him on a visit last fall... right now, however we are living apart dealing with some of our own issues as to where to live. You can be married but you may not be able to work. As a Canadian you can visit up to 181 days without losing your medical plan back in Canada. Think about all the old ladies that live in Canada during the summer, and Florida in the winter....... they can visit, they just can't work legally.
237238239
Citizenship and Marriage
Pakistan

How can you marry a Pakistani girl if you are an Indian guy and want to marry her?

It depends on the religion of each of you.

Irrelevant to the nationality, the rule, per Islam religion, is that:

  • A Muslim man can marry only a Muslim, Christian (Catholic, Orthodox, or other denominations), or Jewish woman.
  • A Muslim woman (virgin, divorced, or widow) can marry only a Muslim (or convert to Muslim) man.

You may say that love is over religion limitations. If you think so, then it is your choice. If you want to deny your religion obligations and requirements to legalize your marriage, then it is your choice. No compulsion in religion. However, choice is responsibility. If you chose to violate your religion obligations and requirements, you hold responsible of your choice and you hold responsible for the consequences of your choice on the Day of Judgment in front of God, the Creator.

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Citizenship and Marriage
Philippines
Philippines Politics and Society
Marriage Licenses

Where do you find marriage records in the Philippines?

The faster and easiest way of finding marriage records in the Philippines is from the local registrar where the marriage took place or alternatively at NSO, Manila. Please query if any authorisation is needed. Obviously, you need to provide the names, dates as the local registrar holds all the records.

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Citizenship and Marriage
Immigration
US Constitution

How do you become a flipnote citizen?

When you post flipnotes for thirty days to get the bronze.

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Law & Legal Issues
Divorce and Marriage Law
Citizenship and Marriage
California

Can you be married but not legally married?

United States

No. Marriage is a legal arrangement under civil law. That means marriage in the United States is restricted and governed by state laws. Therefore, in order to be considered legally married the parties must meet all the requirements for a valid marriage in the state where they will be married.

A legal marriage bestows a host of legal rights under state and federal law, benefits and obligations. The most important of those legal rights are related to inheritance, health insurance, government entitlements and child custody. The children born of the marriage will be considered legitimate and both parents share all the rights and responsibilities of parenthood. In the case of a couple who is not legally married, the mother is considered the custodial parent unless the father establishes his paternity in court.

Religious clergy, along with many other civil officials and civilians with permits, are permitted by the government to perform marriage ceremonies but only when the parties have obtained a civil marriage license. A couple who has only a religious ceremony is not legally married.

Several states still recognize common law marriages. However, common law marriage generally does not always bestow all the legal rights as formal marriage.

See related links.

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