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  • Dr I L Vlad

Romanian Certificates of Bachelorhood (Nulla Osta; Certificate of No Impediment): Practical Guide

Last update: September 2018.

Do you wish to marry a Romanian citizen abroad? If so, he or she will definitely need a proof of being able to marry you. This is call, depending on the country where you intend to marry, a 'Certificate of Bachelorhood', a 'Nulla Osta', or a 'Certificate of No Impediment' ('certificat de celibat'). You have come to the right place! can help your Romanian future spouse obtain one. The easiest way is, of course to contact us, but if you are in Romania and wish to do it yourself, we explain how below. When contacting us, using our smart form, choose branch D - Certificate of No Impediment.

Do you wish to marry in Romania, or in a Romanian Embassy? Then, the Romanian spouse will not need a Certificate of Bachelorhood. Check out our practical guides for marrying in Romania, and marrying in a Romanian Embassy! They contain all the documentation needed for a hassle-free and legally valid marriage.

A Certificate of Bachelorhood, also called a Nulla Osta or a Certificate of No Impediment is a legal proof that someone is single, that is, that they are either not married, are divorced, or are widowed. Each state has its own regulations regarding whether they issue such certificates, and whether and how they wish foreign citizens to prove this point.

Romanian authorities issue a certificate, which proves the fact that a person is single, or divorced, or widowed. It is called a 'proof of registration of a civil status document and its marginal notes' but in Romanian everyone calls it a 'certificat de celibat'. It is provided for by Annex 9 of the Methodology for the Application of the Law nr. 119/1996 regarding civil status documents.

Who may obtain a certificate of bachelorhood ('certificat de celibat') from Romania?

Every Romanian citizen is entitled to obtain such a certificate, even if they were born abroad, as long as their birth was either registered, or later transcribed, in Romania, or at a Romanian Embassy or Consulate. Foreign citizens can also obtain one, if they were born in Romania, but in this case, because they are not obliged to transcribe ulterior marriages and divorces, the scope of the certificate is incomplete.

Who issues the certificate of bachelorhood ('certificat de celibat') from Romania?

The certificate of bachelorhood is always issued by the town hall of the place where the person was born. If the person was born abroad, this is the town hall where the birth was later transcribed in Romania. Even persons who had their birth transcribed through an Embassy or Consulate in fact have the birth registration made somewhere in Romania. This can be either: the place of their domicile in Romania, if they had one; or the Town Hall of Sector 1 - Bucharest, if they were not domiciled in Romania. The website of the Sector 1 Civil Status office is here. For all the others, check out our guide to obtaining a Romanian birth certificate. Or more simply, contact us, and we will get the Romanian certificate of bachelorhood for you!

What documents do I need for a certificate of bachelorhood (Nulla Osta) from Romania?

If you go in person you will need:

-> the Romanian birth certificate. If you lost it, don't worry, you can obtain a duplicate from us!

-> your current identity document;

-> a request form, which you make on the spot at the city hall.

If you send someone else, they will also need a special, authentic power of attorney, as well as their own identity document. The special, authentic power of attorney must be made either in Romania, at a Notary Public; or at a Romanian Embassy or Consulate; or at a local Notary Public. However, in the last case, it then has to bear an Apostille or Legalisation, and be legally translated in Romania.

We make this process very painless. Therefore it is a good idea to contact us!

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A bouquet of flowers, as offered by a bachelor

How long is the certificate of bachelorhood (Nulla Osta) valid?

A common misconception is that the Romanian certificate of bachelorhood has a validity limit. It does not. However, almost every country requests that such a certificate be issued within the recent past. Some (like Romania does for foreign citizens) impose a limit of 3 months, others of 6, or even longer. The best way is to inquire with the local authority which will marry you, specifying that the Romanian certificate of bachelorhood does not have any time limit inscribed on it.

What does the Romanian certificate of bachelorhood prove?

The Romanian certificate of bachelorhood proves the following:

1. That the person has had their birth recorded in a certain civil status registry in Romania;

2. That there is no mention of a marriage; or

3. That there is a mention of marriage, followed by a mention of dissolution or divorce, or the death of the other spouse.

'Mention' means a mention on the margin of the original birth register, kept in the civil status office, according to the Law nr. 119/1996. The process is that every marriage contracted in Romania or at a Romanian Embassy, and every divorce in Romania, is automatically transcribed in the birth register of each spouse. For marriages and divorces contracted abroad, Romanian citizens have a duty of transcribing them (registering them) in Romania.

What happens if I forgot to transcribe my foreign marriage and divorce and I need a certificate of bachelorhood to marry again? You can do so now, in one go, by contacting us! In our Smart Form, use branch J - Transcription of foreign civil status.

The local authority requires me to prove that there is no impediment to my marriage according to Romanian law? Is this the same as a certificate of bachelorhood?

No. The certificate of bachelorhood only proves the status of being single (unmarried), divorced or widowed. It does not prove that another impediment does not exist. For that you need a Romanian certificate of custom ('certificat de cutuma' / 'certificat de coutume'). Luckily, you have come to the right place! As a definitive attorney in good standing, I can issue a Romanian Certificate of Custom. Contact us for this special request.

What is a Romanian certificate of custom?

A Romanian certificate of custom ('certificat de cutuma') is an explanatory document, based in international law, issued by an attorney or public notary, which states the contents of Romanian law, for the use of a foreign authority. In other words, it can have a varied contents, depending on what you need to prove. For example, for a marriage, it would state that Romanian law requires each future spouse to be over 18 years of age, to be of sound mind and to be single, and that no parental consent is required. The contents can be adapted to your needs. It usually contains the text of the relevant legal provisions, translated in the language of the foreign country which requires it.

How can I use my certificate of bachelorhood abroad?

The certificate of bachelorhood cannot be used abroad without either an Apostille or a Legalisation, plus a Legal Translation in the language of the country where the marriage will take place. We can do all of this. Just use our smart form, branch Certificate of No Impediment, and we will take care of the rest as well.

If you wish to do it yourself, you first have to decide whether it needs an Apostille or a Legalisation. The links point you to the relevant guides. Then you can ask any Romanian translation office for the translation. The signature of the translator must be then authenticated by the Romanian Notary Public. The stamp of the Notary Public must then receive either an Apostille or a Legalisation, itself, to be recognized abroad. So perhaps it is best to contact us for this after all.

On the other hand, the certificate of custom does not need any Apostille or Legalisation, only a translation, because it is not an act of authority, but an explanatory document.

Questions? We would be happy to answer them. Just contact us!

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