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How to Navigate Dubrovnik's Wedding Legal Requirements

To ensure that your special day in Dubrovnik, Croatia meets all legalities seamlessly, it is essential to understand the wedding legal requirements in the city. Civil and religious ceremonies in Croatia are legally binding, and civil ceremonies can take place in various approved locations. There is no minimum residency period required, but a court-appointed translator must be present if either of the couple does not speak Croatian. Additional steps are required for a religious ceremony. Marriages performed in Croatia are internationally recognised and legally binding.

Key takeaways

  • Dubrovnik offers a stunning backdrop for weddings with its historic buildings and beautiful landscapes.

  • Civil ceremonies in Dubrovnik can be held at various approved locations.

  • There is no minimum residency period required to get married in Dubrovnik.

  • For a simpler option, couples can opt for a symbolic wedding ceremony in Dubrovnik.

Civil Ceremonies in Dubrovnik

Civil ceremonies in Dubrovnik offer couples the flexibility to choose from a variety of locations, as long as they have approval from the Registry Office. Whether you dream of exchanging vows overlooking the Adriatic Sea, in a charming historic building, or at a picturesque garden, Dubrovnik can provide the perfect setting for your special day.

One of the advantages of opting for a civil ceremony is that there is no minimum residency period required. This means you can arrive in Dubrovnik just a few days before the wedding and still fulfill all the legal requirements. However, it is essential to schedule a meeting with the Registrar at the Town Hall, a couple of days before your big day. This meeting allows you to go through the necessary paperwork and finalise the details of your ceremony.

When it comes to documentation, couples must ensure they have all the required paperwork in order. This includes the Certificate of No Impediment, full birth certificates, and passports. These documents need to be submitted to the Registrar 30 to 45 days prior to the wedding. It is important to note that all documentation must be translated into Croatian. This ensures that the Registrar can properly review and process your paperwork.

If all requirements are met, a Dubrovnik marriage license will be issued, allowing you to have a legal and recognised marriage in the city. This means you can celebrate your love and commitment in a beautiful destination while having peace of mind that your marriage is legally binding.

Required Documentation for a Civil Ceremony

Planning a wedding in Dubrovnik involves ensuring that all necessary documentation is in order. For a civil ceremony to be legally recognised, the following documents are required:

  1. Certificate of No Impediment / Certificate of Freedom to Marry with the stamp apostille: This is an official document certifying that there are no legal obstacles to your marriage. It must be obtained from the relevant authority in your home country and have the stamp apostille.

  2. Full passport with a minimum validity of twelve months: Both the bride and groom must have valid passports that are valid for at least twelve months from the date of the wedding.

  3. Photocopies of the picture page of the passports of the bride, groom, and two witnesses: Copies of the relevant passport pages of both the bride, groom, and two witnesses must be provided.

  4. Full birth certificates with the stamp apostille: Original birth certificates showing the names of both parents must be submitted. These certificates must be issued within 90 days before the wedding and have the stamp apostille.

  5. Decree Absolute and previous Marriage Certificate or Death Certificate and previous Marriage Certificate: If either partner is divorced, the Decree Absolute and previous Marriage Certificate must be provided. If either partner is widowed, the Death Certificate of their previous spouse and previous Marriage Certificate must be provided.

  6. Name Change Deed Poll Certificate and Adoption Certificate (if applicable): If either partner has changed their name or has an adoption in their history, the relevant legal documents must be submitted.

These legal documents for weddings in Dubrovnik are essential to ensure that your civil ceremony is valid and legally recognised. It is important to gather and prepare all required paperwork in advance and submit them within the specified timeframes to obtain a Dubrovnik marriage license.

"Having the proper documentation in order is crucial for a successful civil wedding in Dubrovnik. By ensuring that all necessary paperwork is prepared and submitted correctly, couples can focus on enjoying their special day without any legal complications."

Religious Ceremonies in Dubrovnik

When planning a wedding in Dubrovnik, couples can opt to legally marry at home in a civil ceremony and then perform the religious ceremony in Dubrovnik. This helps to streamline the process.

Residency Requirements

When planning a wedding in Dubrovnik, couples will be pleased to know that there are no minimum residency requirements. This means that you can celebrate your special day in this romantic city without having to spend a specific period of time beforehand.

However, there is an important step that couples need to take before their wedding day. A few days prior to the ceremony, it is necessary to meet with the Registrar at the Town Hall. During this meeting, couples will discuss the required paperwork and the procedure that needs to be followed to ensure a smooth and legal wedding.

If you have chosen to work with a wedding planner, they will take care of scheduling this meeting for you. However, if you are organising the wedding independently, it is your responsibility to make an appointment with the Registrar to discuss the necessary preparations before your big day.

Contacting Croatian Embassy or Consulate

For further information on the legal requirements for getting married in Croatia, couples should contact the Croatian Embassy or Consulate in their country of residence. The Croatian Embassy or Consulate can provide detailed guidance and assistance regarding the necessary paperwork, documentation, and procedures for a wedding in Croatia.

If you are unsure about the location of the Croatian Embassy or Consulate, the Croatian Embassy website provides a comprehensive listing of Croatian Diplomatic Missions and Consular Offices worldwide. Simply visit the website and navigate to the "Contact" or "Embassies and Consulates" section to find the relevant contact details.

Additionally, couples can also consider reaching out to their country's Embassy in Croatia for further support and information. The Embassy of your home country in Croatia can offer valuable resources and insights specific to your nationality, ensuring a smooth and well-informed process when planning your wedding in Croatia.

Planning a Symbolic Wedding Ceremony

If couples prefer a simpler and less bureaucratic option, a symbolic wedding ceremony in Dubrovnik is an excellent choice. Symbolic ceremonies offer more freedom in choosing venues and allow couples to plan the wedding exactly as they desire. These non-legal weddings in Dubrovnik do not require the same legal paperwork and administration as civil or religious ceremonies. Couples can have a memorable and meaningful celebration of love without the legalities and requirements of a legal marriage.


In conclusion, planning a wedding in Dubrovnik requires careful navigation of the legal requirements and paperwork for a civil or religious ceremony. Couples can also opt for a simpler alternative by choosing a symbolic ceremony. Regardless of the type of ceremony, it is crucial to ensure that all necessary documentation is prepared and submitted on time, including any required translations.

Whether you prefer a civil ceremony at a stunning approved location, a religious ceremony in a beautiful church, or a symbolic celebration with more flexibility, Dubrovnik has something to offer for every couple. With its warm climate and a wide range of venues to choose from, Dubrovnik sets the stage for a romantic and unforgettable wedding experience.


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