Giving notice of marriage or civil partnership
If you wish to get married or form a civil partnership in England or Wales you must both give formal notice to a Superintendent Registrar at least 28 days before the date of your ceremony or up to 70 days if you subject to immigration control.
Changes from 1 July 2021
If you’re from the EU, European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, from 1 July 2021, you will need a visa, unless you have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme or you applied to the EU Settlement Scheme before 30 June 2021, and are waiting for a decision.
The visa or permit you need depends on where your partner is from and whether you want to live in the UK after your ceremony.
You can apply for a:
- marriage visitor visa if you’re not going to live in the UK and will stay less than 6 months
- family visa to live permanently in the UK if your partner is a British citizen, settled in the UK, has refugee status or humanitarian protection in the UK
- family permit to join your family member from the EU, EEA or Switzerland in the UK
If you do not have a marriage visitor visa or family visa you can still give notice of your intention to get married or form a civil partnership but the immigration authorities at the Home Office will be told.
The Home Office might:
- ask questions about you and your relationship. If this happens you may need to wait up to 70 days before getting married or forming a civil partnership
- decide not to approve your notice. If this happens you cannot get married or form a civil partnership in the UK
How to give notice
Ceremonies taking place before 31 October 2021
If you have already contacted us to be added to the Priority Notice of Marriage list, we will contact you in due course.
However, if you have not contacted us already, we are now unable to take any more appointments as we are fully booked for notice of marriage appointments during this time.
If you have recently booked a ceremony between now and 31 October 2021 and require a notice of marriage appointment, unfortunately we are fully booked and unable to fulfil your requirements.
We advise you to postpone your ceremony to after the 1 November 2021.
Ceremonies from 1 November to 31 March 2022
For ceremonies taking place between 1 November and 31 March 2022 please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information, so that you can be placed on the emergency waiting list.
You will be allocated an appointment in accordance with the date of your ceremony.
Please email us:
- your ceremony date
- your ceremony venue
- your full names
- your contact telephone number
- if you are British, EU or Non EU
- if EU or Non-EU what visa do you hold
- your home address
- the borough you live in
Ceremonies after 1 April 2022
For ceremonies taking place after 1 April 2022 please refer back to this page after 1 January 2022.
At some point after 1 January 2022, we will either be asking you to contact us so we can place you on the waiting list for a notice appointment or have a facility for you to book your own appointment online.
The notice is valid 12 months from the date notice is given.
The notices will be displayed on the public notice boards of the Register Office in which they were given.
This is a legal document covered by the Perjury Act 1911.
or call 01708 433155.
Where to give notice
If you are an EU citizen you must give notice in the borough in which you live (if you live in separate boroughs you must both give notice separately).
If you are not an EU citizen you must provide evidence of your right to marry in the UK and give notice to any registrar office designated for this purpose.
2 x proof of identification and nationality for each person
- a valid full passport (or valid UK-issued travel document or biometric immigration document)
- either a valid driving licence or birth certificate
- if you believe yourself to be British and a passport is not available, a birth certificate must be produced with extra ID in the form of a driving licence
If you were born after the 31 December 1982 and do not hold a British passport you will need to produce your full birth certificate for nationality purposes.
If you were born in the UK between 1983 and July 2006 your full British birth certificate showing parents' names' plus your mother's UK birth certificate.
If you are not British and do not hold a current passport or an ID card, please contact us for advice.
If you are under 18 years old, you will need to provide a full birth certificate and bring completed consent forms from parents and/or guardians. Contact us for the appropriate forms beforehand.
2 x Proof of residential address
- an original utility bill (not self-printed) dated no more than 3 months before the date on which notice of marriage is given (eg gas/ electric/ water/ landline telephone/ cable/ broadband but not a mobile phone bill)
- an original bank or building society statement (not self printed) or passbook dated no more than one month before the date on which notice of marriage is given
- an original council tax statement (not self printed) dated for the current year which notice of marriage is given
- an original mortgage statement (not self-printed) dated for the current year which notice of marriage is given
- an original current residential tenancy agreement (not self printed)
- valid United Kingdom driving licence (only if not being used for ID)
- if you don't live permanently in the UK but are setting up residency for at least 7 days especially to give notice, you require the Council Tax Statement from the owner or property, plus a signed and dated letter from the owner or proprietor of the property where you are staying stating how long you have been staying at their property for. This must state their name and address. A second form of proof of residence will also be required
Marital status (if previously married or in a civil partnership only)
What you need to bring if you have been married or in a civil partnership before.
Proof that any former marriage or civil partnership has ended including:
- your decree absolute or final order of divorce or dissolution bearing the Court’s original stamp. If your divorce document records your previous married surname but you have now reverted to maiden name and wish to re-marry using only the maiden or other surname, please also bring a linking document such as the previous marriage certificate.
- a death certificate of your former partner. Any widows, widowers or surviving civil partners that are not mentioned on the death certificate as the partner of their previous spouse must also bring their former marriage or civil partnership certificate.
- if any document was issued in a foreign language then a complete translation into English must be produced together with the original document. Any translation produced must be certified and dated by the translator.
Cost to consider clearance of a foreign divorce
- Consideration by a Superintendent Registrar of a divorce/civil partnership dissolution obtained outside of the British Isles (From 1 November 2017) - £50
- Consideration by a Registrar General of divorce/civil partnership dissolution obtained outside of the British Isles (From 1 November 2017) - £75
Some foreign divorce documents will need to be referred to the General Register Office by Havering Registration Service for clearance. This sometimes can cause a delay.
The marriage will not take place until clearance has been received.