Foreign marriage in Indonesia is a marriage between two foreign nationals. It must be conducted under the laws of the Republic of Indonesia. Their marriage must be performed according to their religions and belief. They must have the same religion before they can perform the marriage. After that, they can register their marriage with the marriage registry in Indonesia. We have Civil Registry in the event the couple is non Moslem. We have Office of Religious Affairs in the event they are a Moslem couple.
In order to register your marriage in Indonesia, you need to supply the following supporting documents:
Basically, marriage in Indonesia is under monogamous principle. A husband can only have one wife, and a wife can only have one husband. In the event that you wish to take a second wife, you need to have a court order and the court may impose that your first wife to appear at the court for giving the consent.
In 2019, the legal age to get married both for man and woman is 19 (nineteen) years old. In the event both the bride and groom are younger than 21, they need to have the consent from their parents.
The stipulation of the legal age is according to the law number 16 of 2019 regarding the Amendment of the Marriage Law number 1 of 1974. The basis for this amendment is the Constitutional Court decision in 2017 number 22/PUU-XV/2017. The court ruled that the amendment to the relevant law must be issued within 3 (three) years since they issued the decision in 2017.
This legal age also applicable to foreigners that perform their marriage here in Indonesia.
If you are a Moslem couple, you need to make sure your bride has her own marriage guardian. The guardianship is imposed under the Article 14 of Islamic Compilation Law. This is the law for marriage in Indonesia especially for Moslem couples. The marriage guardian is one of the legal requirements to perform a marriage in Indonesia:
Two witnesses. They must be men and grown-ups. If you're getting married in Moslem, you can't have a female witness;
Ijab dab Kabul (Consent by the groom and the guardian).
Your guardian for the marriage is strictly limited to these person only: your biological father, your biological grand father, and your brother from patrilineal line. If none of them does not exist, you're in need of a help from the judge.
As foreigners, you may or may not have a resident permit in Indonesia.
If you do, this determine the jurisdiction of your marriage registry. If you did not have one, you may register your marriage according to the place where your marriage takes place.
Since you're married under the laws in Indonesia, your property is subject to our laws too. Any property acquired during the marriage is subject to joint property. Anything acquired before the marriage date belongs to each spouse. They have their power to manage the property according to their will.
I suggest you sign the prenup. Even if both of you are foreigners and the assets are located outside of Indonesia. The prenuptial agreement signed under the laws in Indonesia shall be mirrored by the court where your assets are located. If you did not sign any prenup, anything acquired during the course of your marriage shall be join.
I advised American-Russian spouse married in Bali couple of years. Having a prenup under Indonesian laws sound simple. You might think it is not necessary as well. But this is important. This is going to test smartest move you will ever done in your assets protection.
What else you need to know about the marriage in Indonesia? Oh ya, the Children!
If you have a child born before your legal marriage registered in Indonesia, you need to have it legalized. This is simply building a relationship between the child and the father. You guys shall establish paternity privilege between those two persons. This is very important for claiming citizenship for your child. I did this for Australia, Swedish, American, and British couples before. Great people!
The proceeding called legalization of child born out of wedlock. Certain things you need to do before the child legally recognized. Give me a call or drop me an email and we'll take it from there!
We have prenuptial agreement questionnaire, biographic information form, and notice for marriage intention. All the forms you need to start your new journey legally recognized in Indonesia.
My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for reading my posts!
Getting divorce in Indonesia is not easy, especially if you were married abroad, but is still doable. You can rely on the court in Indonesia to dissolve your foreign marriage. This is not the case that they usually see on daily basis. This is about making Indonesia as your primary jurisdiction. Some regular legal issues in terms of divorcing in Indonesia may not be applicable to your case. For example, the marriage must be registered or reported to the marriage registry in Indonesia, you must possess a marriage certificate issued from the marriage registry in Indonesia, or none of you are Indonesian national. Those things are not required to exist in your case. This is a foreign divorce case. It's part of the international civil law in Indonesia.
Reporting of Foreign Marriage
When you're married outside of Indonesia, both of you are foreigners, and either of you work in Indonesia, you don't have to register or report marriage in order to divorce or dissolve your marriage here. You don't have to get a marriage certificate from the civil registry or you don't have to retrieve a marriage book from the Office of Religious Affairs (so called "Kantor Urusan Agama"/KUA). When you're married, you're married. Since both of you are foreigners, no further reporting of your foreign marriage is required with the above marriage registries. Foreign marriage reporting is only applicable to you in the event one of you are an Indonesian national.
This thing has something to do with the term of "Lex Loci Celebrations." Literally, this term means the law of the land where the marriage was celebrated. A marriage or a union of a man and a woman when lawfully and validly celebrated under the relevant law of the land where the two individuals have legal nationality or citizenship, is also lawful and valid in the country where they live (reside or are domiciled).
Principle of Minimum Contact
Marriage performed outside of Indonesia is not automatically legal and recognized. You must willing to go through the extra mile in order to gain recognition under the laws in Indonesia. We called it reporting of foreign marriage. This thing has substantial implication to you and your family. The marriage indeed is the foundation to everything important in our lives i.e. the children, property, inheritance, etc. You make a mess with the marriage, you're messing with your own life. Not to mention your children. So, whatever you do, always think twice.
The foreign marriage reporting has a set of time frame as imposed by the prevailing laws. You need to comply with it. They said don’t put till tomorrow what you can do today. This must be the reason why they put such a time frame in place. The reporting must be made within 30 (thirty) days since you return in Indonesia after the marriage. The older version of the law sets more leeway to report it i.e. one year. They use the new rule, without revoking the old one. The old one is the 1974 Marriage Law, and the new one is the 2003 Administration of Population Law. The old law is considered as general regulation, and the new one is a very specific law governing certain issues. The marriage registry in Indonesia, they tend to use the 2003 for governing your foreign marriage reporting. At Wijaya & Co., we alway identify the issues before they can potentially turns into a problem.
There are two conditions or requirements that must be fulfilled in order to create legal recognition with the foreign marriage in Indonesia. First, formal requirement. The marriage is legal according to the local rules and regulation where it is performed and registered. So, when you’re married, you’re married. The laws in Indonesia will mirror anything that takes place in the country where the marriage performed and registered. Second, material requirements. This conditions applicable absolutely to the Indonesian citizen. It must refer to the prevailing laws and regulations in Indonesia especially regarding marriage. Issue under this criteria is, among others, the minimum age requirements to get marry. Mixed religion is also part of the material requirements. Failure to meet this requirement, the marriage may be voidable. It may be challengeable at the court of law. There’s a slight possibility that the marriage may be legal in the country where you register it, but it might not be recognized under the laws in Indonesia. It’s a quite tricky situation, please contact me should you wish to discuss any further about this. Things may be overlooked. This potentially can turn into something inevitably unpredictable. This can be used as one of the grounds for an annulment. See, there's more to this than meet the eyes.
Article 56 (1) of the Marriage Law imposed strict requirements as well as time frame for foreign reporting marriage to the Indonesia’s government. This law was retrieved from the Principle of Nationality that every Indonesian citizen submit themselves to the laws of the Republic of Indonesia, wherever they are. You see, this is the interesting part of your foreign marriage. The idea behind the issue is an ancient government ruling took place from the colonial government back in 18 century. It was the Algemene Bepalingen ("AB") in the Article 16. This ruling is still there until today and become the basic law of how we determine our individuals can access the legal system wherever they are. We proud ourselves that the laws of Indonesia is always prevail in the life of every Indonesian, even if they are not on the Indonesian soil.
So, the other inevitable legal consequences for getting marry in a foreign country is, among others, without you even realize, you’re inviting other foreign law elements into your marriage life. Not to mention, if your spouse is non-Indonesian. Another foreign law element is joining the club. You know, two is a company. Three is a crowd. You even have higher potential that you may overlook things. But remember, things can be mitigated with the help from the experienced international civil law in Indonesia.
My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for reading my post!
Foreign marriage may be dissolved in Indonesia under very specific terms and conditions that must be met by the couple. This usually happens to couple who live in Indonesia and both of them are expats. If you're experiencing this issue, you need to pay attention to a couple of important legal aspects. First, minimum contact of the spouses in Indonesia. This is to see if the court in Indonesia has jurisdiction. Second, reporting/registration of the foreign marriage. Three, how Indonesian law can rule in your divorce case. Divorce in Indonesia must meet at least one of the legal grounds.
In order to secure your access to the Indonesia's legal system, you need to have a minimum contact of at least one (1) year. You and your wife must maintain 12 (twelve) months residency before the court in Indonesia may be able to consider your divorce case. Having a child born or school in Indonesia is even better. You have better connection and stronger contact with our legal system. If you're employed by the the company in Indonesia, the chance of getting your marriage dissolved by the court here is even higher.
Having your marriage performed outside of Indonesia, doesn't mean you have to report or even register your marriage in Indonesia. You or your wife doesn't have to do that. Some laws in Indonesia requires the parties in the marriage to report the marriage to government authorities, but it only applicable in the event one of you is an Indonesian citizen, or both of you are Indonesian. Since both of you are non-Indonesian, the reporting obligation is not applicable to you. Article 56 of the 1974 Marriage Law, it is not for you and your wife. So, don't bother!
Dissolving a marriage in Indonesia, we have the legal grounds to do that. It's not really printed on the Marriage Law. It's in the 1975 Government Regulation. You know, the legal instrument implementing the Marriage Law in more details. You can't have it dissolved by mutual consent. It's not legal here. There are factual situations that must be met with the legal grounds. Your domestic situation at least must meet one of the legal grounds for dissolving a marriage. They have been regulated in the 1975 Government Regulation, which are, in the event one of the parties:
has committed adultery, is an alcoholic, is addicted to drugs, is a gambler or exhibits other vices which are difficult to cure;
has left the other spouse for two consecutive years, without consent and without legitimate reasons or the absence of reasons beyond his control;
has been sentenced to imprisonment for five (5) consecutive years or a longer period;
has resorted to cruelty or severe ill treatment, endangering the life of the other spouse;
has developed a disability or disease, preventing from fulfilling the duties of husband or wife; or
has irreconcilable differences.
You have to present witnesses to the court. Well, at least two. Unfortunately, it's not one of the CSI movies where you can supply scientific evidence, without any single human being taking a stand at the court room. They want a person, in a flesh and blood, supplying information and describing what happened to your marriage. Yes, I know. It's a conventional civil procedures law we have been using for more than one millennium. It's our legal system, and you have to work with it if you want it to dissolve your foreign marriage in Indonesia. You will have to start looking for them. Your witnesses. They can be everyone. Your domestic staffs, colleagues, common friends, and whoever knows anything about your domestic background. They will have to do you a quite simple job: to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The most sacred job of being a human, and they will have to do it on a witness bench. The loneliest place on earth.
I am Asep Wijaya. Thank you for visiting my blogs and reading my posts.