A marriage certificate is an official document that confirms the legal union of two individuals. In India, marriages can be registered under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, or the Special Marriage Act, 1954. Regardless of the law under which you marry, obtaining a marriage certificate is essential. It’s especially crucial to protect women’s rights. In India, the legal marriage age is 21 for men and 18 for women.
Why You Need a Marriage Certificate
A marriage certificate is vital when you want to:
- Apply for a passport.
- Open a bank account under your new married name.
- Apply for visas when traveling abroad.
- Settle abroad after marriage.
- Required Documents for Marriage Registration
To register a marriage, you need the following documents:
- Identity Proof: Aadhar card or voter ID card.
- Colored Passport-Sized Photographs.
- Proof of Marital Status and Nationality for Foreigners.
- Divorce Decree or Death Certificate: If one partner is a divorcee or a widow.
- Certificate from the Priest: If the marriage was solemnized at a religious place.
- Aadhar Card Numbers of Two Witnesses: Present during the marriage.
- Date of Birth Proof.
- Address Proof for both the groom and bride, both before and after the marriage.
- Identity Proof for two witnesses.
- Permanent Residence Proof for witnesses.
- Signatures of the bride, groom, and two witnesses on the application form.
- Third Witness (Special Marriage Act, 1954): If the marriage is under this act, a third witness is required with their identity proof and signature.
Marriage Registration Procedure
- For marriage registration under the Hindu Marriage Act, follow these steps:
- Apply at the sub-divisional magistrate’s office where either the bride or groom resides.
- Fill the application form, ensuring both partners’ signatures.
- All attached documents are verified when you submit the application.
- The registrar schedules a date for a visit. On this day, both partners visit the office with a gazetted officer who attended the marriage. If everything is in order, the marriage certificate is issued the same day.
To register online:
Online marriage registration is a process that allows couples to officially register their marriage over the internet. To get started, you’ll need to check if you meet the legal requirements for marriage in your area. Then, you create an account on your local government’s official website if needed.
Next, you fill out an online application with details about you and your partner, like your names, birthdates, and addresses. You’ll also need to provide some important documents, like birth certificates and photos.
Choose a date and location for your marriage ceremony, and pay any required fees online. After submitting your application, you’ll get a confirmation number.
On your chosen date, have the ceremony performed by an authorized officiant, and witnesses should be present. The officiant will give you a marriage certificate.
Submit this certificate to the marriage registration office, and they’ll issue you an official marriage certificate, which you can often download online. Don’t forget to update your marital status with other relevant authorities as well. Procedures may vary, so check your local government’s website for specific instructions.