Legalisation Office

Hello ladies, 

It is only 50 days til our wedding in Croatia... our birth certificates and certificates of no impediment are with the FCO legalisation office at the moment. 

The website says their normal turnaround time is 2 days. I called today and was told that they are busy and have a backlog and are only processing documents received last Wednesday today. I  hoping our documents would be dealt with by today at the latest. 

Our documents need to be with the wedding planner by next Friday and I am starting to really worry that we will miss our deadline... have any of you had similar experiences with the legalistation office? do you have any tips on which courier service might be able to get our documents to where they need to be ASAP? 

Any advice would be really welcome 😊


  • Victoria197Victoria197 Posts: 722 New bride

    Ours went through and were returned after 3 days, this was a couple of weeks ago. If they are bet processed today you will get them tomorrow or Thursday so no point in chasing them again until Thursday afternoon

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Oh great, thanks Victoria! If they process our documents on Thursday (assuming they keep up the pace) they might arrive back with us on Friday if we are really, really lucky. 

  • Sara50Sara50 Posts: 196

    The legalisation office raised an issue with the solicitor who signed our statutory declaration as they couldn't find his name on the roll and we were told it could take up to six weeks to resolve!! I was panicking as we were late sending them off to the legalisation office anyway and emailed our wedding planner who said not to worry about the deadline they wanted the documents by actually a week before would be fine if not ideal!! 

    Luckily it was resolved quickly as the solicitor is my boss but even though they want the wedding documents next week perhaps it's not that strict so check with your planner and explain I'm sure it'll be fine. 

    We sent ours to Italy with royal mail which took about a week but when we shipped a box of decorations we used hermes and that only took a couple of days. DHL are also good, we arranged them to collect our USB from our photographer and it was delivered in a couple of days. DHL and hermes are much pricier tho! 

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Hi Sara, thank you so much for the courier suggestions. I don't mind paying more to make sure they are where they need to be on time. I never considered Hermes, but DHL and UPS are similar prices. It will be totally worth it! 

    Fingers crossed they get our documents processed quickly... they haven't even checked to see if there are any problems yet. I am just hoping it's all good! x

  • Hi Emma, 

    It's worth emailing your planner to understand if the deadline is a finite one- they should have taken an extra amount of time as a 'buffer' in case a problem such as this should arise. 

    Hopefully there is a little flexibility and this will put your mind at rest. 

    Happy planning! 

    Catherine x

  • MrsT2017MrsT2017 Posts: 224 New bride

    Has anybody used the courier service provided by the legalisation office instead of them being returned to you??

    just wondering whether I should get the FCO to send them on once legalised or have them returned to me for me to courier them?  

  • lol you gave me the fear 🙈 Sent mine off today and hoping they're processed quickly! I've sent mine recorded delivery and rather than pay £5.50 for their courier service I enclosed a stamped addressed envelope as requested but included a recorded delivery sticker so they can send back recorded (worried if they went missing on standard post! Was only an extra pound!) xx

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Hi Mrs2be2017, i am using their courier service for my documents to be returned, but they are coming back to me. I think the £5.50 courier service is only to addressed in the U.K. 

    Hi Italybride2017, I sent ours by recorded delivery last thursday and they arrived there on Friday. Hopefully they will be processed by the end of this week - ideally I'd like them back by Friday, but that's looking unlikely At the moment. When do your documents need to be in Italy? x

  • Ideally our wedding planner wants to take them out in 1st week of April but she said doesn't matter if not and end of April is fine 😊 bloody joke the £120 charged for 4 documents though!! 😮🙈

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    It's mental isn't it?! £125.50 for a sub-standard service to get 4 documents stamped... the worrying thing is that the girl I spoke to today said they haven't even checked that they CAN legalise my documents yet. if there is any problem I wouldn't know til the end of this week. We need to just assume it's all good until they tell us otherwise... yikes!? xx

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    @emma681 which docs did you send to get stamped? We have the letter and our birth certificates... am I missing something for a Croatian wedding?!

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Aa, we have sent each of our birth certificates, and a certificate of no impediment for each of us.

    What is the letter you sent to be stamped? 

    We need to also send photocopies of the photo page of each of our passports to the wedding planner but they don't need to be stamped. If you have witnesses from home, they want to see their photo page too, but we are having Croatian witnesses so that's not a problem for us.


  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    A wee update ladies... 

    DX just emailed me - they have my documents, and were about to deliver them today. It has been rescheduled for tomorrow when my fiancé will be home to sign for them. 

    I feel a little silly now that my panic was unnecessary! x

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    @emma681 Glad to hear it that it's all coming together. The documents have been the biggest panic- we're not until early June, so are in the middle of document gathering right now.

    I meant the Certificate of No Impediment. After a panic yesterday, the wedding planner confirmed we're on the right track!

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    @Aa that's good news... it's always good to get some reassurance that you're on the right track. You will have 4 documents to send as well then, since you get a Cert. of No Impediment each. 

    The documents have been our only stress because none of them are allowed to be over 90 days old at the date of the wedding and they need to be lodged with the registrar in Croatia 30 days before. 60 days really isn't long to gather it all; get it stamped; then away to the planner. 

    Are you getting married in Dubrovnik too? Who is your wedding planner? x

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    Exactly! We'll hopefully get our Certificates in a week and a half- the rest is plain sailing from there, as we've allowed nearly a month for the stamping etc (to take Easter into account).

    We're using Marcela at D'Inspiration. Can't speak highly enough of her as she is absolutely amazing. We'll be flying out again late April to finalise things, even though we both know Dubrovnik well for various reasons!

    Where are you getting married?

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    We are having a tiny wedding with only 4 guests and our little boy, so our ceremony is outdoors, at the Palace Viewpoint (or Cave Bar More in case of rain). While we have our photos taken in the old town, our guests are going to Pucić Palce and then we are going for a meal at Gradska Kavana Arsenal. Afterwards, we will go to a few bars and (if it's open) may end up in Revelin if my fiancé has his way. Its all very relaxed! 

    How about you? X

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    aw! That sounds awesome! Hopefully you'll be rain free, but that's a wonderful back up!

    We're getting married in the old monastery on Lokrum, and have got the restaurant at Pucic Palace for the whole evening- a fab 5 course meal plus drinks and dancing for 35 people. After that...who knows? :) think we'lL do some photos on Lokrum and some in the old town. 

    Staying between the Dubrovnik President (pre and post wedding) and Pucic Palace (night before and after wedding). we're just coming up to the two month mark- so exciting!

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    @Aa, your wedding sounds lovely. We really like Pucic Palace when we were there last year.

    We are staying at the Dubrovnik Palace.

    Which photographer do you have? We fell in love with Veronica Arevalo (Svadbas) as soon as we started looking at Dubrovni as a possibility... her photography made up our mind! 

    Our wedding is six weeks on Wednesday xx

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    Bet you're excited! I just finished table plans tonight- ten weeks to go!

    Svedbas photos are awesome. We've ended up booking Foto Adria as we wanted more reportage style than posed. we saw a lot more of their portfolio than what is on their website, and it really captured the vibe of what we wanted.It's a really hard decision to choose as there seem to be so many awesome photographers in Dubrovnik!

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    It really is difficult. We saw Veronica'a photos and fell in love... we did look a LOTS of others after that, and they are all quite special, but we kept coming back to Veronica. 

    We are having an old white Mercedes to take us from the ceremony to the Old Town and decided to pay to be allowed to take it inside the city walls... can't wait to get photos with it lol. 

    Is all the rest of your planning done? x

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    That's going to be spectacular! No cars here, but we're hiring boats to take people to get there and a speedboat for me to get there! Have you found that having a planner has made it much less stressful? (We totally have!)

    We only have a few bits left- most of them revolve around chooosing music And atufff to keep kids quiet- there are 6 on our 32 person list). Also need to put together the final seating plan for people to look at, and we're flying out for a weekend after Easter to finalise a lot of the things we've decided (and maybe be pigs and re-taste the 5 course meal we're serving!).

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Oh, it's all very James Bond... we wanted to do that, but they have stopped letting boats dock at the hotels' private docks and we didn't want to go from there to Gruz, to get the boat. 

    Having a planner has made this whole planning process much easier. Other than my minor meltdown about the documents, it's been totally stress free! I would whole-heartedly recommend using a planner. 

    Ha! You should absolutely re-taste your menu... it would be rude not to. I can't wait to get out there. Have you been to Pantarul For a meal? We absolutely loved it when we visited last year and have a table booked already for this time round. 

    What are you having for favours? We have had Licitar Hearts personalised, and will give them and black cherry rakija to our guests. X

  • AaAa Posts: 38

    I know what you mean about the planner! I don't know how people do it! Have you got a date at the town hall to talk to the registrar yet?

    That's sad about the boat. Ours are all going from the Old town harbour. Just thinking about it, I'm ultra excited! Hopefully we can pick up our certificate of no impediment next week, and get everything sent in one go in enough time to get them to her  by May 2. Am hoping we'll get them before then in order to take with us on 21 April, though...

    We're going edible for the favours- personalised gingerbread men cookies that will also double as place settings! We're also giving them a little bag with something lavender, some alcohol (not for kids, obvs) and some truffle olive oil. For the ceremoney, we're providing fans for everyone plus ribbon wavers (in lieu of confettI).

    On the menu front, we actually have 4 (meat, fish and vegan.. plus a two course kids one). Oops. We've not had the vegan one, so maybe we'll try that plus re-try one of the others...

    I have been to Panatrul- it's lovely, and a fab location. Was actually thinking of booking a pre-wedding lunch there the day before for our families. Would highly recommend Restaurant Dubrovnik and also Kanoba Dalmatino in the Old Town.

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    Yes, we are meeting the Registrar on 8 May and the wedding is on 10 May. Our wedding planner is coming with us to that and then we have a meeting with our photographer at the venue, then I have a hair/make-up trial... it will be a crazy, busy day! 

    You have plenty of time for your paperwork. If the Legalisation Office don't take too long adding your stamps you could definitely take them out with you. Mind you, if you do end up needing to send them... we used DHLexpress and it was only £28. 

    We have booked Pantarul for everyone on the last night of our holiday. We might take them to Taj Mahal the day before.


  • AaAa Posts: 38

    I love Taj Mahal! just realised that we're now 9 and a half weeks out- eeeek!

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