Marriage Process on Okinawa

This is the most concise explanation on how to get married on Okinawa. I hope this helps everyone. Please share.

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Legal Marriage Process in Okinawa

By David Higgins ( )

Steps to become legally married

 Step 1:  Affidavit

-        Single Affidavit
        (one spouse is a US citizen, one spouse is a Japanese citizen)

-        Joint Affidavit (both partners are US citizens)

Fill this out at the Legal Assistance Office.

The affidavit is the first step of this process. Military ID holders can have this affidavit notarized at the Legal Assistance Office:

Camp Foster Bldg. 437 (Mon – Fri)                         Camp Hanson Bldg. 2394 (Mon. only)

Time:  7:30-11:00 ~ 13:00 -14:00                            Time: 8:00-11:00

You will need to provide evidence of your US citizenship with one (1) of the following: US passport, birth certificate, or naturalization certificate.


Step 2:  Japanese Notification of Marriage Form


You can pick this form up at the City Office or from my office (Okinawa Translator). This 2-page form must be filled out in Japanese; therefore, if your spouse is Japanese you will most likely be able to complete this form out on your own.  Before submitting your form, I offer a free service in which I proofread for accuracy.

If both spouses are US citizens, I offer my services of completing the 2-page form for a fee. I will ensure correct documentation prior to submission.Two witnesses, each with a copy of their passports, are needed to sign the application.  NOTE:  Some city offices do not accept military ID as an acceptable form of witness identification. 

Step 3:  The Marriage Certificate


If at the time of submitting your application along with all additional documents it meets Okinawa’s current standards, you will be given the choice of two types of marriage certificates; an A4-sized legal document (350YEN) or B4 ‘Classic Look’ Certificate (1400YEN).  This document will be printed and require pick up the NEXT DAY.  This is the perfect opportunity for wedding photos with family and friends to celebrate this process which can sometimes be difficult and time consuming.


Step 4:  Translating the Certificate into English.


The marriage document you will receive will be solely in the Japanese language.  If you would like this translated into English, it must be done by an official legal translator.  We at Okinawa Translator are official legal translators and are located in Minato, Chatan, providing translation service that usually takes 1-2 days. Please give us a call or email at


Congratulations, you are now legally married!


David Higgins is a full time Japanese/English translation company owner located in Okinawa, Japan. David, his wife Hazuki and four employees and various freelancers of other languages run Okinawa Translator. They specialize in translation of all kinds of documents, technical manuals and on site interpreting for instructional safety classes with the military to family reunions. They have expanded they’re business all over Japan and overseas to serve customers in any location.