On May 25, Saeima supported the proposals of Minister of Justice Inese Lībinas-Egneres (JV) to allow witnessless marriages from 1 July 2024.
The amendments are supported by the Civil Code and the law “On the entry into force of the family law and the procedure for its application of the renewed Civil Code of the Republic of Latvia 1937”.
The Civil Code seeks to clarify the existing norm by stating that marriage takes place in the personal presence of the groom and bride. It is planned to be established in such a way that the groom and bride can invite one or two adult witnesses, but the absence of witnesses does not prevent the marriage.
In the Law “On the Entry into Force of the Family Law Part of the Civil Code of the Republic of Latvia 1937” and the procedure for its implementation, it is planned to determine the amendment to the Civil Code on the waiver of compulsory presence. Witnesses in the marriage process will take effect on July 1, 2024.
If the application and other documents required for the establishment of marriage are submitted after the specified date, the provisions of the Civil Code will apply.
Lībiņa-Egnere and the Ministry of Justice explain that the mandatory presence of witnesses when registering a marriage has long been discussed in practice. Today, the mandatory presence of two adult witnesses no longer makes legal sense, it is a matter of historical tradition, the justification for the proposals is stated.
TM representatives explain that the presence of witnesses has become official. While historically witnesses were expected to be present and attest to the fact that both the marriage and marriage took place in good faith and of free choice, this task is now “successfully performed by civil registry officials”.
Source: Tv Net
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