Family matters

The photo depicts a father, daughter, son and mother sitting on the floor in front of a sofa.

Family of four, © Colourbox


Registration of a marriage

In Singapore the Registry of Marriages and the Registry of Muslim Marriages are responsible for marriages. Please contact them directly if you have questions concerning marriage in Singapore:

Registry of Marriages

Registry of Muslim Marriages

If you need German documents for marrying in Singapore, please contact the responsible marriage registry at your place of birth in Germany (e.g. for birth certificates) or at your last place of residence (e.g. for Ehefähigkeitszeugnis).

To apply for an Ehefähigkeitszeugnis please refer to the information provided on our German website: Familienangelegenheiten

Marriage registration in Germany

General information

There is no legal obligation to register the marriage abroad of a German national in Germany, nor to request a German marriage certificate. However in certain cases it is recommended to apply for a marriage registry or a German marriage certificate - for example, if you intend to live with your foreign spouse in Germany in the foreseeable future.

If you want to take on the name of your spouse, a name declaration according to German law will be necessary, e.g. when applying for a new passport. It is possible to make this name declaration when registering your marriage in Germany. Then you may also obtain a German marriage certificate which indicates your new name.
Please carefully read the information leaflet on name declaration and name change

Which registrar’s office is responsible?

The registrar’s office responsible for foreign marriages is the registrar’s office in the place where the applicant has his/her residence in Germany.
If none of the spouses has a residence in Germany, the primary registrar's office in Berlin (Standesamt I in Berlin) is responsible for recording the birth and issuing a birth certificate.

1) No residency in Germany: If you are not registered in Germany the Standesamt I in Berlin is responsible for registering your marriage.

If you live permanently in Singapore, you can register your marriage at the German Embassy in Singapore and request a German marriage certificate.

2) With residency in Germany: If you are still registered as living in Germany, you can also register your marriage with the local registrar’s office personally or you can apply via the German Embassy in Singapore.
If you want to register your marriage via the German Embassy, both of the spouses have to come personally to the Embassy at the same time.

Which documents have to be submitted?

Please bring the following documents:

1. Fully completed and signed application form (see right side)
2. Legalised marriage certificate (original and two copies)
3. Passports of both spouses (original and two copies each)
4. Residence permit for Singapore of both spouses (original and two copies each)
5. Birth Certificates of both spouses (original and two copies each)
6. if applicable: proof of dissolution of any previous marriage of both spouses (e.g. decree of divorce or death certificate of spouse) - original and two copies each

In individual cases, further documents may be required.

In principle all foreign documents have to be submitted with a legalisation.

1) No residency in Germany: Documents written in any language then German or English must be submitted with translations into German.

2) With residency in Germany: All foreign certificates have to be submitted with a translation into German. Please also read the following information:

Legalisation of foreign documents

A name declaration may also be required if you want to take on the name of your spouse. Please carefully ready the following information before coming to the Embassy: Name declaration and name change


The fees for registering a marriage and conducting the associated formalities amount to approximately 60 to 80 EUR, depending on where in Germany the registrar’s office is located. The fees for registering the marriage must be transferred directly to the account of the registrar’s office. You will receive an email with detailed information.
At the German Embassy, the following additional fees apply:
Fee for certification of photocopies: 10 EUR
Fee for certification of signatures: 25 EUR
The fees have to be paid when submitting the application. The fees will be converted into SGD according to the current exchange rate of the Embassy. You may pay in cash or with credit card (Visa, Master). If you pay with credit card, the transaction will be processed in EUR. Further bank fees may apply.

Processing time

It can take up to several months to process the registration of marriage. The German Embassy in Singapore has no influence on the registration process and cannot provide any information as to the current status of any application.

Registration of child's birth

There is no legal obligation to register the birth of a child to a German parent abroad, nor to request a German birth certificate.

However, It is recommended that you register the birth or request a German birth certificate under certain circumstances – for example, if the child is to live in Germany in the foreseeable future.

In certain cases, you may need a declaration of your child’s name when applying for a passport. This declaration differs from the birth certificate, but it can be given as well together when you register the birth.

Name declaration for a child

If a child of German parents is born outside of Germany, the child' name is not automatically evident according to German law, even if in the foreign (e.g. Singaporean) birth certificate of the child a surname is already indicated.

Children of parents who carry a common surname according to German law automatically receive the surnames of their parents. If the parents carry different surnames at the time of the birth of the child, a name declaration for the child is usually necessary.

A name declaration is usually necessary when applying for a passport, or when the registration of a German birth is requested.

Birth certificates for persons born in Germany

Obtaining a birth certificate from Germany

To obtain a birth certificate from the Federal Republic of Germany, you must contact the competent German agency (i.e. the “Standesamt” or Registrar's Office). Your letter should be addressed to the Standesamt of the place (Village, Township, City) where you were born. You can find the contact information for your Standesamt by searching the World Wide Web for the key words: Standesamt+place where you were born.
Information about the fee will be sent to you with the certificate. Please do not forget to mention your name and address!

The German Embassy in Singapore recommends to order the international version of the birth certificate. This version is already translated into several languages, including English and French, and will save you the expense of a translation.

Information of the Standesamt I in Berlin on obtaining German birth certificates (in German only)

Obtaining birth certificates from former eastern German territories

In order to obtain a German birth certificate from the former eastern territories of the German Reich and Prussia, please contact the registrar's office “Standesamt 1” in Berlin. The address is:

Standesamt 1
Schönstedtstraße 5
13357 Berlin (Mitte)
E-Mail: urkundenstelle“at”labo.berlin.de

If the relevant register is available at the Standesamt, a birth certificate will be issued. Otherwise (eg if registers have been destroyed during the war), you will receive written confirmation that the Standesamt is not in a position to issue a birth certificate in your case. When inquiring, please include a postal address, as birth certificates can not be sent via E-Mail.

Legalisation of German birth certificate for usage in Singapore

Sometimes Singaporean officials ask for a legalised birth certificate. To legalise a German birth certificate, please contact the Embassy of Singapore in Berlin

Recognition of a divorce

The place at which the marriage was solemnized does not automatically determine which court will have jurisdiction over the case or which law will be applied to the divorce proceedings. Both these issues have to be determined in each individual case.

According to section 606a of the German Code of Civil Procedure, German courts have jurisdiction over matrimonial matters, inter alia, when one spouse is a German national or, if both are foreign nationals, if they are both habitually resident in Germany. This jurisdiction is not exclusive, i.e. it may also be possible to get divorced abroad and, under certain conditions, to have such a divorce recognized in Germany (cf. “Recognition of a foreign divorce” below). Whether it is possible or sensible to get divorced abroad is something to be discussed with a specialist lawyer.

Information on divorces abroad

A divorce in Singapore is not automatically recognized in Germany; in order to have your divorce recognized, an application to the relevant Landesjustizbehörde must be submitted through the German Embassy.

Application form

Please have court-certified copies of your Certificate of Divorce, your Divorce decree and your Marriage Certificate (each to be authenticated by DFAIT first) with you. These documents are part of your application and have to be legalized by the German Embassy.

Pension matters

General Notes

Numerous people in Singapore receive pensions from Germany. These payments are not made by the German Embassy but by various German pension insurance institutions.

For information regarding your pension, please contact the German pension insurance institutions or private pension consultants directly.

Certificate of Life

Recipients of a German pension receive an annual “Declaration for Continued Receipt of a Pension from the Federal Republic of Germany” (Certificate of Life). This request is sent directly by the competent pension authority in Germany to the pension recipient.

Note: Additional information about the Certificate of Life for pension recipients abroad can be found on the website of Deutsche Post:

Instructions for Pension Recipients

What confirmation options do I have?

a) Digital Proof of Life

The “Digital Proof of Life” offers the possibility to provide proof of life digitally using a smartphone or tablet.

With the annual letter, you will receive a personal QR code for scanning. The QR code directs you to the identification process with the POSTIDENT app. This service is available 24/7.

Details on how to use this are included in the annual letter.

If you successfully complete this process, you do not need an appointment at the Embassy, nor is there a need to send anything by mail (postage).

b) Send Confirmed Form Back by Mail

The recipient's signature on the Certificate of Life must be certified by an official body. If the entitled person is no longer able to sign the Certificate of Life personally, an authorized person may sign instead.

Your signature can be authenticated at the German Embassy. Pension recipients must appear in person at the German Embassy and present suitable proof of their identity and nationality (e.g., passport or Singaporean ID).

After confirmation, you must return the form by mail to the sender.


Certificates of Life for the purposes of statutory pension insurance (including pensions from statutory accident insurance) are free of charge.

Certificates of Life from other pension providers (e.g., company pensions, supplementary pensions) are generally subject to a fee.

A fee of €34.07 is charged, which is converted into SGD at the daily exchange rate of the Embassy. Payment can be made using Master/Visa card. Please present the card in physical form.

Please use our appointment scheduling system for booking appointments.

Taxation of Pensions

Information can be found on the German Pension Insurance website under the following link: Taxation of Pensions

Inheritance matters

General information

In Germany, the heir proves his/her legal right by a certificate of inheritance which is issued by the competent German probate court (Nachlassgericht) upon notarized application. It is normally required by banks or land register if the inheritance includes real estate or bank account(s) in Germany.

How to obtain a certificate of inheritance

1. The applicant has to provide all information necessary in advance, to enable the German Embassy to draft a formal application. Therefore, please use the prepared questionnaire. Please enclose copies of all documents proving the right to inherit (e. g. last will, letters testamentary, death certificates, birth certificates, marriage certificates etc.)
2. The German Embassy will prepare the application document and contact the applicant to set up an appointment for the applicant to appear at the German Embassy and to sign the document in due form. As German is the official language in Germany, the text of the application will be put forward in German only.
If the applicant does not understand German, the consular officer will explain the contents of the paper to the applicant and translate it orally. If he/she wants to have an English translation of the application, the applicant will be responsible for all costs incurred by a translation.
It is necessary that the applicant shows all the original documents of which copies were provided with the questionnaire during this appointment. The German Embassy will notarize the copies, so the Probate Court in Germany receives a complete application with the pertinent documents enclosed.
3. The applicant will receive the original and a first certified copy of the application. The original should be sent to the competent probate court. A certified copy is kept on file by the German Embassy.
4. After having received the application, the probate court will issue the certificate of inheritance and forward it to the person named as recipient in the application.


The German Embassy will charge a fee for the notarization. Fees are based on the value of the estate. The applicant is required to provide detailed information about the value of the estate in Germany. Please contact the land register (Grundbuchamt) in Germany or your lawyer for further details of the value of real property.
The fees will be converted into SGD. You may pay in cash or eith credit card (Visa, Master). If you pay with credit card, the transaction will be processed in EUR. Further bank fees may apply.

The German Probate Court will also take a fee for issuing the certificate of inheritance. These fees are also based on the value of the estate and have to be transferred direcly to the bank account of the Probate Court.

Additional information in restitution matters

In restitution cases, the certificate of inheritance will be issued by the probate court (“Nachlassgericht”) free of charge. However, there is a fee for the notarization of the application at the German Embassy (see above).
The certificate of inheritance will be issued by the probate court free of charge only, if it is sent directly to the German office, dealing with the restitution claim (Landesamt/Amt zur Regelung offener Vermögensfragen, abbreviated: LAROV or AROV). A notarized copy of the certificate however, may be sent to a representative or to the applicant himself/herself.

Declaration of renouncement of succession

According to German law the heirs can declare the renouncement of succession to the German probate court within six weeks after being informed about the case of succession. This period is extended to 6 months, if the deceased had his/her last residence abroad or if the heir is staying outside of Germany.

The signatures on the declaration will, as a minimum requirement of form, have to be certified (signature certification). Both parents (one if it is a case of sole custody) of minor children, have to declare the renouncement of succession on the children’s behalf.

The certification of the signature is the “simpler” form of a notarization (as opposed to the full notarization of a document). By certifying the signature the consular officer confirms that the person indicated in the document signed it in front of him. The signature has to be given in person in the presence of the consular officer or has to be acknowledged in his presence. No advice about the legal meaning of the document to be signed is provided.

The declaration has to be sent directly to the responsible Probate Court.

Further information

More information on family matters as well as application forms are available on the German website

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