So you're getting married. Congratulations! Whether it's your first time or your seventy-seventh, legal processes will always lay a long trail on your way ahead before you can say "I do" and proceed with what really matters. The good thing is that for now, your local register office is there to help whether it be a birth, death, civil partnership or marriage you would like to file registry. It will tell you everything you need to know on how best to go about the formalities required in making your precious life events socially recognized. Then you can be blissfully on your own until you decide to make new arrangements.
The first thing to think about is whether it will be a religious or civil marriage. In the former, the ceremony will take place in the Church of England or Wales. It is expected that you live close to and worship in these churches. You will simply need to discuss arrangements with the vicar. No dealings with the superintendent registrar would be necessary. Only if you wish to marry in a different place of worship will the council office need be informed. When you choose a civil marriage, you may marry at the local register office itself or in any place approved by the same marriage office. Available venues for each district office can be looked up online in their respective websites.
In general, notices are to be given at least 14-16 days before the intended wedding date. For some register offices, you can schedule as far ahead as two years, others do not allow more than twelve months waiting time. If approved, notices will be displayed for fifteen days. The notice will be valid for twelve months and the wedding may occur within that year since the release of authority. A change of venue needs issuance of new notice. As witness to the union, you need two people over 16 years old.
You should be a resident of UK for at least seven full days before giving notice. Registration may be done immediately on the start of the eighth day.
Documents and Details
First they will need your full name, age, address, nationality, occupation and where you want your wedding to take place. As proof of identity and citizenship, you must bring your passport, full birth certificate, driving license, NHS medical record and any other identification card. To confirm your address and residency, you may bring either or both utility bills and bank statements.
The legal age is at least 16 years old on the day of their marriage. A written consent from parents, guardians or the court is needed for affairs undertaken by persons under 18.
Neither of the parties should be married. If they have had previous marriages, in or out of the country, a Decree Absolute, a certificate of divorce, death or annulment should be presented as proof.
The couple should each issue an intention to marry; meaning both of them should be present at the day of giving notice provided they live in the same district. It will cost each of them £30. An additional fee for the ceremony itself will be around £40. Flower arrangements and music lists are covered but you may provide your own as long as they are not in any way religious in nature.
Procedures regarding registering marriages are similar across UK district offices. For a specific reference you may check out Manchester and Leeds city councils through their website to know more about this subject.