I pit the Clark County (NV) Recorder

The whut?

The Clark County Recorder. See, when you get married in Las Vegas, and you’re a damn furriner such as myself, and wish to register your marriage in your country of residence, you need a certified copy of your marriage certificate. Said copy then needs to be deposited at the Secretary of State in Carson City, who provides it with an Apostille certificate, which means those two documents together will be accepted in any country subscribing to the Apostile Treaty, initiated in The Hague in 1961. Both the United States and the Netherlands are subscribers to this treaty, so all should be hunky fucking dory.

So, my wife ordered a certified copy way back in May, and had it sent to Carson City, after which it was returned to her with the corresponding Apostille letter.

And I took the whole package home with me after my trip to the US, in early July.

On July 15, I filed all the paperwork at city hall in Amsterdam, and was told that it would take about 4 weeks to process. No worries, my wife arrives on August 27, so it’s all good.

Yesterday, while driving to a client, the car phone rings. It’s Betty Bureaucrat from city hall. She says, “This document is no good - it doesn’t have the city of marriage on it”. Then she asked if I could come over with the original marriage certificate to verify the information.

So, I went over there tonight. And lo and behold: the document with the Apostille is not actually a certified copy of the marriage certificate, but a certified abstract from the Clark Country records. A different document altogether, which does indeed state bride and groom names, date of marriage, date of registration, and the marriage certificate ID. It is undersigned by the Clark Country Recorder, and the accompanying Apostille letter states that said recorder is authorised to sign it.

So, I’m thinking, “Well, the original marriage certificate does state the city name. And it has the corresponding ID. All should be well!”

Well, no.

The undersigning party of the original marriage certificate is the Clark County Clerk, not the recorder. Different person altogether, and as such, not verified and guaranteed by an Apostille letter in my posession.

Now, I take some responsibility for not checking everything 27 times, but for crying out loud, this is not something I do on a daily basis.

The Clark County Recorder DOES do this sort of thing on a daily basis. What sort of a dumbass does it take to send the WRONG document to Carson City for an Apostille verification? Am I the first foreigner ever to get married in Las Vegas or something?

So, now we need to expedite another certified copy to Carson, where people will then again expedite it with an Apostille to me. Upon receival, I bring it to city hall, where they ask the Dutch Immigration Police for approval. They will send me a big-ass form, which I will return. Then an expected back log time of “several weeks”, and then they’ll tell city hall to register the marriage, after which my wife can apply for a residency permit.

My wife lands in 15 days. See where this is headed?

Oh, there’s of course the 90 day buffer period provided by the standard tourist visa every American gets for the Netherlands, but it HAS to be done in that time period, or we’re fucked.

So, in short, FUCK YOU, Frances Deane, Clark County Recorder - or whomever was in charge of shipping out the wrong document. Thanks for making us jump through an extra 27 hoops under rather stringent time pressure. As if relocating to be with your spouse is easy to begin with, even WITHOUT your incompetence fucking things up.

I need a fucking drink. :mad:

Coldfire, don’t you know what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas?

Seriously however, that sucks. I really hope you can get this straightened out in time.

Holy crap, man. I hope that works out in time.

Nevada can marry you, but they have a hell of a time providing proof latter.

My husband and I were married in Reno.

I have been trying for two years (and have paid the fee twice!) to get them to mail me a copy of our marriage certificate.

Coldy, I work with clerks every day. I can tell you that this is not a rarity, and not unheard of. Most clerks think they know what they’re doing, and since I work with Court Clerks mostly, I can tell yout hat they think they’re fucking lawyers and know better than my boss on a regular basis.

Sorry they fucked up, but they hardly ever get it right the first try.


So, the Clark County bureaucracy is conducting business according to standard operating procedure.

You knew you were in Las Vegas when you got married here. What is it that you’re complaining about?

I live in Las Vegas and work at a law firm. If you need any calls to be made, you have my email address.

Sorry…good thing you didn’t try to also get a driver’s licence at the DMV while you were here. You would still be standing in line.

Errrr… obviously, I’m complaining about some dumbass clerk sending out the wrong document. What’s your point?

Damn, Coldie, that truly sucks. As a longtime basher of government bureaucracy, I feel for you. I recommend that you take DMark up on his offer. In the US, one right connection trumps a hundred laws. Go for it. And best of luck.

Coldfire, I have a contact with the Sec of State’s office (he rides, you know? :wink: ) and would also be willing to make a call on yer behalf if needed. Nevada is a pretty small place, really. We all know each other.

That’s awfully friendly of youse guys. I might just take you up on it, too, depending how things develop. gato, perhaps I’ll e-mail you later. DMark, you too, if needed, although I suspect your help will be less needed than gato’s, as the process at Clark County itself is quite speedy. IF they send the right stuff. :rolleyes:

Feel free. Same user name at webtv.net. Hope I can be of some help. At least its a local call!

I’ve met Dean a few times and he was a customer of mine at the bike shop. Turns out we went to the same University also. I had his office intervene for me when some dork screwed up my kid’s birth certificate. One call and it got fixed, pronto!

gatopescado wins.

But in case you need anything followed up on in Clark County, offer still stands.

I schmoozed his secretary. :wink:

Right. Like I said, standard operating procedure.

This is, after all, Las Vegas.

Or did you think that gambling was confined to the casinos in this town?

Evidently it isn’t. Still, one expects the marriage capital of the world to be able to handle marriage documents in some way or another. Not too horribly presumptious, I think.

I’m definitely keeping gato in mind, that dude’s got connections! Can you make Nevada swing the Democrat way in November, too? :wink:

Wow, that sucks.

It could be worse, though.

You could be moving over here and trying to become a citizen. From what I’ve heard the INS takes incompetence to an art form.

Seriously, though, I hope it works out!

I dunno. Can you come up with over 200,000 reasons why I should? :wink:

(one can dream…)

Coldfire, one more suggestion (though it sounds like gato is your best shot):

This sort of international screw-up is something that consulate offices are supposed to expedite. I don’t know what the US embassy might be able to do for you, or whether the pressure would be best applied via your own embassy. Just suggesting that it’s another lever you can use to get things back on track.

Best wishes, and maybe we can make thumb screws mandatory for civil servants who screw up like this. :smiley:

Forgive my ignorance of such things, but why can’t you simply get married again in the Netherlands?