Nigeria: Restrictions on Marriage to Nigerian Nationals Forthcoming

Nigerian Immigration authorities have announced that they will be implementing restrictions aimed at preventing marriages to Nigerian nationals strictly for the purposes of obtaining a Nigerian residence permit.

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Mar 20, 2018
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The situation

Nigerian Immigration authorities have announced that they will be implementing restrictions aimed at preventing marriages to Nigerian nationals strictly for the purposes of obtaining a Nigerian residence permit.

A closer look

The new measures include the following:

  • Monitoring of marriages between Nigerians and foreign nationals in Nigeria;
  • Foreign nationals entering Nigeria under a holiday visa will no longer be allowed to marry Nigerian nationals but instead must obtain separate justified permission prior to entry in Nigeria;
  • Foreign nationals who marry a Nigerian national will have to stay in Nigeria for six months after marriage before they are eligible for a residence permit; and
  • Nigerian immigration authorities will restrict the types of jobs to which a foreign national married to a Nigerian national can apply, especially where local workers are available.

 

Impact

Foreign nationals seeking to marry a Nigerian national may experience the below immigration consequences:

  • Additional scrutiny on their applications, which may lead to extensive and/or delayed processing times; and
  • Delays or difficulties accessing various labor markets, especially where local workers are readily available.

 

Background

Previously, foreigners were being allowed to enter Nigeria under a holiday visa to marry a local. The authorities have discovered that most of these marriages are aimed at undermining immigration laws, and have started prosecuting violating Nigerian and foreign nationals.

Looking ahead

Fragomen will provide more information on the topic as it becomes available.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to africainfo@fragomen.com.

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Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP, Fragomen Global LLP and affiliates, (collectively known as “Fragomen Worldwide”) is the world’s largest firm dedicated to corporate immigration, and is recognized as the leading global immigration services provider.

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