Nowadays, international relationships are a completely normal thing. We are used to talking to and marrying men and women from other continents. However, when it comes to mail-order relationships, people start getting tense. So what is this hysteria about mail-order brides?

So are mail-order brides illegal, or is it completely normal to order foreigners to your doorstep? Why do people equate mail-order brides to sex slavery? Is it fair that this business has a risky reputation, or do we have enough legal grounds to think so?

mail order bride legality

Rules and regulations of mail order brides in different countries

Every country is regulated by different constitutional rules, so no wonder we aren't going to get the same response regarding mail order bride legality.  Men who use these services want to check if their actions are 100-percent legal and legitimate, and that is fair. All in all, better safe than sorry. So these are the rules in the following countries:


It is proven that America allows different marriage agencies. This rule was accepted in 2006 on a constitutional level which gives the US citizens approval to receive foreign ladies' info and initially the contact. However, there still are specific occasions as to how you can access foreign brides without getting in trouble. First of all, your communication must be mutually accepted and consensual. Secondly, before sending a foreign bride, agencies must check whether the US citizen has a criminal background, including attempts of assault. In other words, your name will be checked in a Sex Offender Registry database before sending a girl to your country. Additionally, all the essential documents must be translated into the foreign bride's native language.


Ten years ago, the issue with mail-order brides was a grey zone in the Canadian constitution, meaning that there were no specific reasons not to invite a foreign girl over. However, it's led to horrible consequences, including systematic abuse and contractual marriages involving brides from developing countries who used Canadian citizens as a ticket to a better life. Thankfully, the Canadian government seized to turn their eyes on offenders and created a specific guide about sponsorship in 2012. Additionally, they created a Family Sponsorship Program that regulates every rule concerning foreign marital issues. Although it didn't appear the solution to every problem, this regulation helped people understand what is considered illegal when it comes to mail-order brides. Now, these services are legal in Canada.


Although the UK has the most complicated rules for mail order bride legality, it is not forbidden to use such services because the government usually regulates them. However, be ready to go through trials and tribulations because this process involves endless bureaucracy.

So, are mail-order brides illegal?

Are mail-order spouses illegal in other countries?

Mail-order brides are a normal practice in places outside the US or the UK. Even Arabic countries with the strictest rules towards women allow international marriages and services called to help men transport foreign women and accommodate them in their cities. However, should you be concerned if you are not from the listed above places? Where is it illegal to use those services?

 Generally speaking, there are not many countries that banned Foreign Brides Law. Therefore, if you follow the rules and don't mean any malevolent actions towards immigrants,  most countries have no legal grounds to sue you or contact federal agencies. However,  the Republic of the Philippines officially has an Anti-Mail-Order Bride Law (Republic Act 6955)  that forbids any compensatory relationships between Filipino women and foreign men. It is ironic because the Philippines have an extensive brides market, managing to find loopholes to avoid punishment from the government.

How to find a legitimate mail order bride service

Are mail order brides real, or is it a telltale for naïve foreign men with lots of money to spend? People who testify against foreign bride's companies must have come across unfair and malevolent services who took their money and did nothing in exchange. How do you not bite the bait and choose a good agency from the first try?

are mail-order spouses illegal

Always check the reviews

Every real mail-order bride's site has plenty of testimonies to prove its legitimacy. Moreover, it is ok for dating agencies to be controversial. However, suppose you see too many positive reviews that all look the same. In that case, it is a major red flag because no one's experience can be equal regarding international marriages. 

Get back to the roots

A trustworthy company is easy to trace up to its origin. If you cannot see where and when a certain company was established and who is at their headquarters, it is a telltale sign that some shady business is going on. On the contrary, well-known agencies always provide essential information, including legal policy rules and addresses.  It must be easy to check the company owners and find their names in an international database.

Check the legality information

As it was said before, not every country is open and specific about mail-order bride's legal matters. If you want to be safe and sound, check the information listed on the site regarding legal specifications. Suppose the agency doesn't have that info provided on their main page; it is best to contact the help team and ask them to provide documents and links to constitutional rules. If you think this is a redundant step, remember that it doesn't mean that a foreign girl wouldn't get in trouble if your country allows international bride's business. Please don't put another person at risk because she might be clueless about the consequences.

Try to talk to a girl

Scammers and professional gold-diggers mess up at the earliest stages of your connection. If you receive strange requirements or offers from the beginning, you are in a fishy situation. In reality, your online dating doesn't have to differ from usual internet long-distance connections. However, if girls charge you outside the dating app or suddenly disappear because of immediate problems, it is time to log off from such a site and move to a different platform.

Compare, compare, compare

Experience comes with years of trials and tribulations. If you didn't have luck with a certain site, it doesn't mean that all of them work the same way. You should always have several options to choose from and go back to your best bet. Additionally, it is wise to compare reviews and real-life testimonies from your friends or acquaintances with similar experiences.

Ask a girl to see you in real life

mail-order bride's legal

It doesn't matter if you meet in person or use video calls; you should know if the girl that confesses love exists at all. Malevolent companies hire translators to text foreigners as if they were mail-ordered brides. So always check if the woman who texted you exists by asking her to call you on FaceTime or Skype.

Is mail order bride legal?  It is legal in most countries. However, there are some exceptions. Mail-order brides are women that use services to find foreign men and move to a different country. It has nothing to do with slavery or other negative connotations as long as your connection is 100% consensual. Be sure to find a good site to have the best experience possible and find your perfect spouse.