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Foreign Divorce - Do I need judicial recognition?

k1 visa requirement

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#1 marisolph

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Posted 17 June 2017 - 11:42 PM



I was married to a French citizen last 2006 but we parted ways  last 2009. We got married here in Philippines but he filed for divorce in France. Our divorce was finalized last June 30,2016 but as of this writing I only have the copy of the divorce decree. I believe the divorce decree needs to be authenticated in France, by which my ex-husband is doing right now.


By 2010, I found someone new and he came to the Philippines and stayed here for 7 years. We'd been living together for more than 7 years but due to unforeseen circumstances, he had to go back to America. His mom was diagnosed with ALS.


Last February 2017, he went back to America. He asked me to visit him and be there for his mom's birthday (as it may be her last birthday). I thought my divorce won't be eligible for a K1 visa, so I applied for tourist visa with clear intention that it was just for 2-week visit. However, my visa application was denied. The consul told me that I should have applied for K1 visa.


The consul called the next applicant so I didn't have to time to  ask more questions nor provide more information.


My American boyfriend and I were planning to get married for a long time but due to my situation, we had no choice but wait. Now that I am finally free, he wanted to file for K1 visa. I don't want to hire an immigration lawyer due to the cost. We are not rich, and my American boyfriend got a job in America last April 2017. I don't want to burden him with all my problems knowing that he's been going through a lot.


MY questions are:


1. Would my divorce decree (when fully authenticated by the authorities in France and in the Philippine Embassy in France) be enough to prove that I am free to marry?


2. Do I need judicial recognition here in the Philippines knowing that we are planning to get married in Texas?

#2 Fritz


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Posted 18 June 2017 - 03:52 AM

Since you plan to marry in US, US rules apply to the documentation.


Divorce, Marriage and Birth certificates do not need to be authenticated by the US Consulate. Certified court documents issued by the local court records authority and state issued certificates are acceptable.

Documents in a language other than English or the language used in the country where the interview will be held need to be accompanied by an English translation done by a competent translator who will certify that it is a true and accurate translation.


Submit photocopies of civil documents and translations with the petition.  Carry photocopies and the original civil documents and translations to the Embassy interview.


The adventure continues



*Authentication by the Philippine Consulate with jurisdiction for the place issuing the document and Judicial Recognition by a Philippine court for non-Philippine civil documents is only required for legal proceedings and filings in Philippines.  Civil documents provided by a foreigner for the purpose of filing a marriage in Philippines are normally accepted without authentication and recognition, but this is an exception to the general rule for foreign legal documents presented in Philippines.   Foreign documents supporting the marriage application, in Philippines, submitted by a Philippine citizen DO need to be authenticated and judicially recognized.


*Where to obtain French Marriage & Divorce documents. (For other countries, enter the country name or place name in the search box at the top of the page)


*Sample Translator's Certificate (PDF)

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