Chapter 3 of How to marry a French national in the Philippines and get a Spouse Visa (Getting Married and The Waiting Game)

69

September 16, 2016 by Crescentine

Step 5. Get Married!

I arranged for a simple civil ceremony with a company that was referred to me by my friend who also got married to a French national before. You can use your marriage license to get married anywhere within the Philippines!

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Heart Focus Events Management can arrange for simple weddings to grand weddings, just let them know your budget and what you need to be done!

General requirements for a civil wedding:

  1. Original Marriage License issued by Taguig City Hall
  2. Photocopy of Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR)
  3. Photocopy of the Legal Capacity of Marriage
  4. Two witnesses over 18 years of age and not related
  5. Wedding rings

 

Their office is located at Capitol Masonic Bldg. Room 202, 2nd flr., Matalino st. Brgy. Central Diliman, Quezon City. They operate starting from 9am and you can get married at any time between a 10am – 4pm schedule.

It is a dated building with Gemmary pawnshop on the ground floor. It’s right beside Kabab Korner and across Baliwag on Matalino st.

Why get married with Heart Focus Events Management in Q.C. if we lived in Taguig?

  1. Affordable prices (8,000 pesos for civil ceremony at their office).
  2. NSO head office is right around the corner along East Ave., the waiting game is longer if you pass by an NSO satellite office instead of going directly to the head office.
  3. They take care of finding your solemnizing officer.
  4. They file your marriage certificate at the Local Civil Registry and they will also get the endorsement from the LCR.
  5. My family lives in Q.C. and affordable places abound in the area for a reception / hotel staycation.

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The price was 8,000 pesos for a simple civil ceremony in their office with Reverend Rodolfo Gonzaga as our solemnizing officer. The price included the fee for the solemnizing officer, the use of their office, typing of the original copy of the marriage certificate, filing for the marriage certificate at the Local Civil Registry in Quezon city plus getting the endorsement papers from the LCR. This is by far the most reasonable price we have found!

Heart Focus does not process the endorsement to the NSO, which you have to do yourself.

*There is also a photographer that will take your photos if you get married at the Heart Focus office, he will charge you 50 pesos per photo and deliver the photos in a CD format.

Now for the waiting game, get married close to the 15th of the month for the optimal waiting time. I’ll explain why later!

After getting married, you will come back to their office in 4 working days to get the original copy of the marriage certificate filed at the LCR in Quezon City. This does not yet include the endorsement. However, you can request for a rushed original copy (500 pesos) of your marriage certificate on security paper (SECPA) signed by an NSO representative. This can be used when scheduling your seminar with the CFO and applying for a new passport with the DFA. Get two (2) copies!

NSO takes new marriage certificates filed at the LCR by batch every 15th of the month so count 30-31 days from the nearest 15th of the month to the date of your wedding and that’s when you’ll get the endorsement from the LCR, courtesy of Heart Focus. (ex. We got married on March 3rd, NSO took our marriage certificate on March 15th thus, the endorsement will be ready by April 15th).

Now, take the endorsement document given to you by Heart Focus and personally file it at the NSO head office which is just at East Ave., which is at the other end of Matalino St. A lot of people have to wait longer if they don’t personally file the endorsement at the NSO head office as well as NSO satellite offices take very long to transport marriage certificates to the NSO head office which delays the process of waiting for the marriage certificate. By doing this, you are shortening the wait for your marriage certificate by at least a month.

After endorsing your marriage certificate to the NSO, you will receive the original copy on security paper (SECPA) authenticated by the NSO in two weeks from the date of endorsement. This document is the one needed by the French Embassy to process your demande de transcription d’acte de mariage and the livret de famille, a requirement for your spouse visa application.

marriage-certificate

*Wedding Tips: We stayed at a hotel on the same street as well to avoid the traffic to Quezon city the next day, the hotel is The Sulo Riviera, a classy and cozy hotel that offered an excellent stay accompanied with complimentary drinks and a breakfast buffet for two! We stayed one more night during our wedding day and they even upgraded our room for us to have the most romantic wedding night as a newly married couple.

We also had our simple intimate reception at Ninyo Japanese-French Fusion Cuisine and Wine Lounge in Katipunan ave., an amazing and romantic place with orgasmic food and drink that guarantees to satisfy the Filipino and French palates. The plate prices ranged from reasonable (less than 500p) to expensive (1,500p+) but each and every dish was made with skill and love!

Our wedding day was simply intimate, classy, magical and memorable. We spent an estimated total of PHP 34,000 for the entire wedding (hotel, reception and marriage proper). Not bad huh?

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Step 6. Demande de Transcription d’Acte de Mariage at the French Embassy!

The requirements are the original NSO authenticated certificate of marriage (on yellow paper) with Red Ribbon from the DFA, photocopy of the original certificate of marriage from the city hall or office where you were married and an accomplished form that is to be provided to you by the embassy.

Before you get your NSO authenticated marriage certificate, you need to file an endorsement to the NSO / PSA that is located at NSO Central Outlet, East Avenue, Quezon City, 1101 Metro Manila.

Go through the main entrance gate, then look for the nearest window and fill up the form given to you by the officer, proceed to the big yellow air-conditioned building at the back of the compound! Show the guard your form and he will tell you where to submit the files, there are normally less people in the afternoon around 2pm.

After filing the endorsement, there is a fee to pay (PHP 140 / document). You may opt to request for more than one original copy.

The endorsement document should ideally be provided to you by the office who married you or the local civil registrar in the city where you were married. After filing this at the NSO main office, you will have to wait two weeks to get it!

Once you have it, proceed to the DFA to get the Red Ribbon and then submit your documents at the embassy, make sure to go in the morning! Et voila, you will just have to wait 2-3 months for the livret de famille (family book) which is one of the requirements for the long stay spouse visa.

Sick of waiting? Instead of waiting 2-3 months in the Philippines, I decided to apply for a short stay tourist visa to wait in France with mon amour instead. After 90 days, which is the maximum number of days that a short stay tourist visa allows, I’ll come back to the Philippines to receive our livret de famille and file an application for the long stay spouse visa in France.

I’m back from my 3-months waiting period in France and I finally received my livret de famille and the transcription of our marriage certificate in France from the French embassy in Manila. Make sure to call the embassy and schedule an appointment before you go!

etat-civil1

Step 7. Demande de Visa Long Sejour – Spouse

On the same day, I also filed my application for the long stay spouse visa – living in France. I now have to wait for 10 days to get the visa….

The requirements, as of September 2016, are seen here. This is subject to change so I will not list it down here to be safe!

AND…I finally got my spouse visa with multiple entry and a one year validity! It didn’t help that Gloria Macapagal Arroyo with bodyguards and the Senate with bodyguards were there as I was the least of the embassy’s priority although I was first in line…All is well that ends well! I got it!

UPDATE: They also recently updated their requirements, as of Sept. 5, 2016, they added an extra requirement called the “Demande d’attestation OFII”. You can get your copy of the application form via this website. Speaking of OFII, this is the next step to this entire migration process once you arrive in France that will allow you to live permanently in the country. Nope, it does not end with the spouse visa. I’ll tell you all about that in another post.

The very last step is to go to CFO again to get a clearance sticker attached to your spouse visa, without this sticker, immigration will bar you from leaving the country so make sure you get it!

I went to the CFO at 1pm as recommended by my counsellor, there was almost no one there. I filled up the form and got a number. Waited for 5 minutes and when my number was called, gave my passport along with the guidance counselling certificate. After 15 minutes, I received my passport with the CFO sticker on it. Voila!

cfo-sticker

Merci beaucoup to everyone and to mon amour for sticking with me throughout this entire 8 and a half months of processing all my papers, I’m leaving for France on the 16th of September, 2016. Au revoir!

jadorned_bloglovin4

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69 thoughts on “Chapter 3 of How to marry a French national in the Philippines and get a Spouse Visa (Getting Married and The Waiting Game)

  1. koala says:

    Hi Crescentine!

    I am very glad I found your blog!
    You are such a great help to us
    I had read on your chapter 3 that you applied for tourist visa while waiting for the family book
    I would like to ask how much money should I have in my bank (sorry it’s quite personal)
    What should I put in my iterinary or anything
    Before we got married with my hubby I applied for tourist visa and got rejected twice in a row
    Now we are married and is processing papers which is a long long process
    We would like to be near each other again even for a short period of time
    I really miss him so much 😥

    -koala

    Like

    • Crescentine says:

      Hi Koala, you’re welcome! I’m so happy to have helped you and your fiancé!

      Normally, your past two rejections should not matter even if you apply for the tourist visa a third time as the embassy promises that every application is treated separately with no prejudice of previous applications or rejections. Do you have other travel stamps or other visas from other countries though? It’s good to have but if not, it’s also alright.

      For the money in the bank, I have a formula that I posted I think sa chapter 1, if i’m not mistaken. Normally it’s the SMIC (minimum daily wage in France) multiplied by the number of days na magstay ka in France. So for example, if the SMIC is EUR 55 per day and you’re staying for 90 days that means (EUR 55 x 90 days = EUR 4,950 or PHP 295,000). However, you can reduce this to half if your fiancé or his family can get you an original copy of the attestation d’accueil which is a certificate that they can get from the Mairie of the city they live in here in France (it costs EUR 30).

      They can get you this certificate that says na they will accommodate you for the entire duration of your stay, the formula becomes only HALF of the SMIC. So instead of EUR 55 per day, it’s going to be EUR 27.5 per day nalang so (EUR 27.5 x 90 days = EUR 2,475 or PHP 147,500) ang dapat na money in your bank account when you apply for your tourist visa 🙂

      When you have a spouse visa na, there’s no more need to show any proof of financial capacity since karapatan mo na makuha yung visa.

      For the day to day itinerary, just put some cities nearby na you might (or might not) visit. Just make sure na it’s reasonable, like for example, 1 week going to Paris, then the next week going to another city. You can also put some days just staying at home but make sure to mention the city name.

      I think the important thing is, that the embassy has some idea of where to find you on a certain day / dates AND to prove you’re really going on “tour” as a tourist since they’re also after tourism profits.

      Like

  2. Miju says:

    Bonjour Crescentine!

    First of all I would like to thank you for your great and very reliable blog.

    My french boyfriend and I read it and it’s our map now on how we’re going to move forward with our relationship of getting married soon.

    I really wanna ask further but i think it will be better if we can ask it properly to you in a personal message. Do you have email address or contact number? Thank you very much.

    God bless you and your family.

    Bisous 🙂
    MIJU

    Like

  3. Fritzie Ecarma says:

    I got married here in France.. they will give you the livret de Famille on the wedding day.

    Like

  4. Salv says:

    Hi Crescentine!

    Thank you for this information rich blog! It is such a great help! Clear and very detailed. I have always referred to your blog from the time we applied for the Legal Capacity and marriage license (we’ll get married this December) and now for the next steps, I have just a clarification with tourist visa application (some were already partly answered in the comments section). I will also apply for tourist visa while waiting for the release of family book. In the letter application, is there a need to state the day-to-day itinerary? Or INSTEAD OF THAT I can just state there that I will be joining my husband and return to PH once family book is released? It is just so impractical for the day to day since I guess mostly I would just be home 🙂 but I wonder if it is really a requirement.

    Thank you!

    Like

    • Crescentine says:

      Hi Salv, you’re welcome! I know full well what you’re going through that’s why I made this blog. It can be so hard to find internet resources about this process. If you encounter anything during your process na hindi updated sa blog ko, please let me know so I can update the info here 🙂 For the day-to-day itinerary, it’s better to put in the extra effort to make it even though you’re just going to be staying at home. Ako din mostly I stayed at home pero I added some nearby cities in the itinerary para supported yung “tourist” status. They might deny you for the reason na hindi ka naman pala talaga mag “tour” and they’re after the tourism profits. Also state that you will be returning to the PH to get your family book and marriage transcription din on the itinerary since it’s good enough proof of return.

      Like

      • Salv says:

        Thank you Crescentine! That indeed makes so much sense, I will surely do that. Yes sure I will update you so others can also benefit with the shared information. Well, as of now there is one that seems to be promising. It is about the Marriage Contract processing. My fiancé and I have time constraint so we really checked how to even more expedite the process. The LCR people in Taguig are very helpful! I communicate with them from time to time and the same with NSO. I have read that getting PSA/NSO Marriage Certificate would take at least 2 months from the time of wedding. Based on my inquiry with LCR Taguig and NSO, it could possibly be done in 7-10 days (if wedding is held in Taguig). I just really hope that everything goes smoothly as planned. I will update you on this. In the meantime, here are some information that may help others.

        1) Taguig LCR does not require anymore that the Legal Capacity be authenticated by DFA. As of October 23.
        2) If Civil Wedding with a Judge, bring your Marriage License to the Clerk of Court of Pasig Regional Trial Court located at 8th Floor, Bulwagan ng Katarungan Lungsod ng Pasig, Caruncho Ave, Pasig. Look for Ms. Mia ‎(02-746 1443). The requirements are: (a) Marriage License; (b) Legal capacity- certified true copy (as certified by LCR, at P100 fee); (c) cenomar of couple; (d) birth certificate of couple (e) Cedula; (f) P300.00 processing fee.
        3) The assignment of Judge will be done through RAFFLE, every Monday, kaya dapat mabigay sa Clerk of Court on or before Monday. The following day, may result na. You don’t need to go to Pasig again, you can call them to get the Branch No and name of Judge where you are assigned to.

        We have gone through the above just few weeks ago, and now we are just waiting for the confirmation of schedule with the Judge.

        I am not sure with other cities or municipalities, based lang ito sa LCR Taguig where we got our Marriage License and where we plan to get married as well.

        Sana makakatulong sa mga naghahanap ng information..

        Like

      • Crescentine says:

        Thank you so much for the information, Salv! I’ll update my articles accordingly. This is so helpful. Bon courage for your marriage and wedding planning / processing! 😊

        Like

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