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Married to a Polish girl in The Netherlands and residing with her here as well

18 Apr 2012 #1
Hi all,

I got a question which I kind of ask along with my wife so we could say we have a question :). The situation is as follows: my wife is Polish and I'm Dutch. Currently we're married for almost a year now, which is fully registered in the Netherlands. My wife is worried about the registration in Poland of her new living circumstances and how to report it. We'd like to go through the proper channels but the embassy is absolutely not helping in regards to giving out information around procedures.

My wife currently has her old ID which has her old address (which is still the address of her mother); and her given name as well. Changing these documents would require her traveling to Warsaw and changing her ID and reporting our marriage and change of address there, which is cumbersome. We do travel to Poland every once in a while, but to be forced to go again after a month just to pick up a new ID is somewhat overkill as it would require her taking a day off and a plane ride back and forth.

So the questions we have are:
Do we really HAVE to go through the whole ID changing process?
Is there a problem with waiting this long (we weren't aware of these laws stating something like 90 days as the term to report the marriage)

Could we solve the whole ID issue by simply getting her a passport, which can be done through the embassy?
18 Apr 2012 #2
I'm only curious as to which language you folks use in common, Dutch, Polish or (Basic) English?

As to the rest of your query, I'd consult your local embassy for such specific information.

By the way, it's "I HAVE a question.", not I got a question, and if so, then "I'VE got...."

OP AlexRies
19 Apr 2012 #3
About the languages we tend to speak English with eachother, as you've duly noted my English is top notch :) and hers is good as well so that's our common denominator. I do speak some Polish as I've studied at the Warsaw university for 8 months so you pick something up then, but I'm not as far that I can actually write or say something proper besides; tak, nie, dzien dobre, dobre wyrt... evening :), dzienkuje and such basics. My wife speaks Dutch quite well, but I keep on speaking English where perhaps I should speak Dutch to her for practice purposes... so yeah we speak English mostly.

As for the local embassy: they give us pretty much no information though I'm not fully sure if my wife is asking the right questions :). She isn't as tenacious as I am when it comes to this kind of stuff. I saw some similar questions answered quite extensively on here so I was hoping to get a similar answer.

One of her main concerns though is that she's doing something illegal by not having reported that she got married to the Polish government. She doesn't care 'that' much about her status as a Polish citizen so it's likely that she'd become Dutch in a few years if it's worth the hassle going through the paperwork.

And thanks for the correction there, I'll use the "it was late and a long day" excuse for my horrid grammar at that point :)
19 Apr 2012 #4
Much appreciate the reply, Alex.

Waar woon je al in Nederland? Ik zat vele jaren geleden in Utrecht, toen ik in Europa was en vond de Nederlanders noch vriendelijker dan de Duitsers (..maar NIET zo aardig als de PolenLOL)

Sorry vanwegen mijn vreselijk Nederlands. Het was en warme en lange dag vandaag:-))

You'll find that many Poles want to learn the lingua franca English. Some are quite good at it; most aren't. Ought to be interesting to eavesdrop on conversations in the Ries household ^ ^

"Hey, treasure! How much watch?"
" Six watch. Go but! You come late on the work!!"
"Let's make somethink as I come home, he?"

Just joking. Your conversational English looks ok to me. As long as you and your beloved understand each other, I suppose it really makes no difference.
Polsyr 6 | 769
19 Apr 2012 #5
My wife and I registered our marriage in Poland by mailing our papers directly to the registration office. We called them on the phone and got all the details from them. The papers had to be translated and attested by the Polish embassy. However, we chose to keep the same name because changing the name while you are not in Poland is seemingly a "cumbersome" process.

The papers we sent to the registration office were:

1. Marriage certificate, translated to Polish and attested by Polish embassy.
2. Application form for registration of marriage. Tell your registration office that you need this and they will email you a blank one.
3. Additional application form declaring the names will not change (in our case), and also declaring which last name your future children will have. Again, ask the registration office for this. NOTE: Both this form and the form mentioned in # 2 above need to be signed by both of you at the Polish embassy or consulate and in the presence of the Consul, who will also sign these applications and attest them making them legal declarations in Poland. Also, it is worth knowing: they will refuse to hyphenate a Polish last name with a non-Polish last name, regardless of whether you ask for name hyphenation for the spouses or the children.

4. Translated and attested birth certificate or civic record of the non-Polish spouse, clearly stating their marital status and the name of their spouse (if the marriage has been registered in their country) or stating that they are single if the marriage is not yet registered.

5. The Polish spouse's birth certificate, which does not need to be translated nor attested.
6. Copies of both of your passports or identity cards, attested by Polish embassy. The passports or ID cards must be current and valid.

Furthermore, and as per our experience:
Once they receive all the papers, they should complete the registration process and issue a Polish marriage certificate within no more than a week.
If you don't want to go to Poland to collect the papers, then you can ask them to send the papers to the Polish embassy in your country. This will take about 6-8 weeks (!)

They will provide 3 documents in 2 sets of copies, first is the short form marriage certificate, second is the long form marriage certificate, and third is the decision with regards to approval of marriage registration. All you will ever need is the short form marriage certificate as far as we have experienced.

We paid all applicable fees at the Polish embassy.
OP AlexRies
20 Apr 2012 #6
Hi Polsyr,

Thanks for the full reply and description my wife actually got off the phone a bit ago with the embassy and they pretty much laid out the processes for us. We already set part of this in motion having our own documents/registration papers translated including my own birth certificate. A good start as we can push those through registration in Warsaw, her mum will do that for us which is apparently an option here, and get the documents ready by the time we go to Warsaw in early May.

The thing though is that apprently the ID is issued through local authorities and you need to change this there as well, so since she's from Warsaw there is no way at all that she can get a new ID from the embassy. She has to pick it up in person. However my wife understood that she's obligated to get a new ID within a specific time-frame and the clock starts ticking after we do the whole registring our marriage thing. This was not true, however it is good to have a document that states your identity properly including the name change which my wife does want very much. So we're going to get her a passport through the embassy, she was worried that since she didn't have a passport at all it would be a problem to get one while her ID contained outdated information. Again that was not true luckily.

Also Lyzko; my wife is very much internationally oriented and her spoken English is much better than the average non-native speaker as well. This really does help alot (also early on in our relationship), but it's also more difficult to switch away from English towards speaking mostly Dutch. I found that even though at the Politeknika there were lots of choices in learning new languages -no matter the faculty you were in- and these courses were very popular, the Polish don't like speaking foreign languages all that much. They tend to quickly un-learn these languages and become very uncomfortable speaking anything but Polish. I remember my parents coming over to visit me in Warsaw and they tried to order ice cream themselves (yes at Grycan), the girls behind the counter paniced after the "Do you speak English" question and in the end they never got any ice cream. I could probably write a book about the contrasts between the Polish and Dutch cultures just after those 8 months. Personally I love Warsaw and Poland, and wouldn't mind living/working there; though having an equivalent of my current wage in Poland would be very nice, and I still dread learning Polish it's so complicated in compared to Dutch and English!

Thanks again for the help and very useful info!
20 Apr 2012 #7
The pleasure is/was mine entirely, Alex:-)

Should you need to avail yourself of any Polish tutoring (on an informal 'off-line' basis, of course!), I'd be pleased to offer my modest services. You'll have to contact the PFAdmin directly for my account though as I can't post my address any longer.

While Polish indeed has a far richer arsenal of grammar than either present-day Dutch or English, it's worth learning, since the growth of Poland's importance within the EU and beyond is making its presence more acutely felt, and, much as with the numerous Hispanics here in the US, most Poles STILL do not know English well enough to communicate on a truly comfortable, high level. The Dutch definitely try their hardest, and often they even succeed:-) Is maar 'n grapje, he-he!!!
Peter Cracow
22 Apr 2012 #8
Legislation is clear. Your wife has a good law to register your marriage in Polish registry too. Civil administration will do it, but she has to write an application and send some documents, like marriage act, birth act, statement about name (previous, new, compound), etc.

I assume that above procedure will change her data in the PESEL database about marriage status and name. And what with ID card? She would have outdated data (surname - if changed) as many person do or she can apply for a new ID card. May be it would be important on Polish red carpet or in a bank or notary if you are going to do sth. in Poland. Policeman can check PESEL directly.

If you don't really need to waste your time for this all, take your bikes and go on a hike instead.
Dreadnought 1 | 143
2 Mar 2013 #9
I am English my wife is Polish, we moved to Poland nearly 3 years ago......we had been married about 3 years in UK and never recorded the marriage in Poland). We had even both been married before and it was still no problem. (just got to show these people in offices that they work for us not the other way around as they like to think). Our decision to come and live in Poland was sudden and happened within a 6 month time frame. My wife had her ID changed to her married name and new address no problem. (she had been in England for 30 years) she then had our marriage registered here in Poland again no problem.....if you wish to know the details of who to contact let me know and my wife will write out the correct procedure.

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