How and when to give notice for marriage
Both the future bride and groom must submit their completed marriage notice forms, relevant documents, declarations and fees to the Registrar of Marriages for the council district where the marriage is to take place. Your marriage notice will be placed on public display at the Registrar’s office.
Timing of marriage notice
Notice for all marriages must be given in the 12 month period prior to the date of the marriage. You must submit your notice early enough to allow the registrar to make sure both parties are free to marry one another.
Normally, notices should be with the Registrar about eight weeks before the marriage, but if either of you have been married before, the notices should be with the Registrar ten weeks before.
The minimum period is 28 days before the date of the proposed marriage, but if you leave things as late as this you could be faced with the need to postpone your marriage.
Only in exceptional circumstances will the Registrar General authorise a marriage to take place if 28 days notice has not been given.
How to give notice
You can download and print out a marriage notice application form at the link below. You will need to submit a separate form for each person.
Documents you need to provide
When you submit your marriage notice application form you will need to provide the originals of the following documents to support your application:
- full birth certificate (long version)
If you were married previously, you will also need to provide the following:
- certificate of decree absolution (if your previous marriage was dissolved)
- certificate of decree of divorce (if you have previously been granted a divorce)
- marriage certificate from previous marriage (if you have kept your previous married surname)
- death certificate if your previous spouse is deceased
If you were born outside the UK, you need to provide the certified copy of your birth certificate issued by the appropriate authority of that country and your passport or national identity card.
If any of the documents are in a language other than English, a certified translation in English must also be provided.
Photocopies of documents are not acceptable unless certified to be a true copy by the issuing authority.
Don’t delay giving notice to the registrar if you are waiting for originals of any of the documents above. Authorised or notarised copies may be acceptable for the purpose of giving notice; however the Registrar will need to see the originals before a marriage can take place.
Marriage and immigration control
If you are not a UK, EEA (European Economic Area) or Swiss national you will be required to complete an Immigration Status Statement. You will need to submit the status statement along with your notice application.
You can find out more about immigration control and the Immigration Status Statement at the link below.
If you are visiting the UK to marry
If you are visiting the UK to marry, you will need to provide the documents listed above, the appropriate visa and an immigration status statement (if applicable) along with your marriage notice application.
You can find out more about visiting Northern Ireland to get married at the link below.
The cost is £22 per notice form. Separate notice forms are needed for each person.
If you are having a civil ceremony there is a fee of £36 for the solemnisation of the marriage.
The district council will charge additional fees for room hire in their premises or for marriages at approved venues. Details of these charges are available from each of the councils
If you submit your notices by post, a cheque for the correct amount should be included with your application form. You should make the cheque payable to the district council.
Submitting your notice application
You can submit your notice forms, documentation and fees in person or by post to the registrar in the area you are planning to marry. You can find contact information for the District Registrars at the link below.
What happens next
Ahead of your marriage date, you may be asked to visit the Registrar’s Office to make any final arrangements, and/or to collect the marriage schedule.