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Legal requirement - the notice of marriage or civil partnership

By law, notice to marry or register a civil partnership must be given at a registration office in the district where you live. This cannot be done less than 29 days or more than 12 months in advance of your ceremony.

Both parties have to give their own notices, preferably on the same day or if not as soon as possible. Your period of notice does not commence until both parties have given their notice. There are further considerations if either of you is a foreign national.

Both of you must have lived in England or Wales for a minimum of seven clear days (i.e. eight nights) immediately before giving notice at the registration office. If you both live in the same district you should attend your local registration office together. If you live in different districts, each of you will need to give notice separately in your own area. Please contact your local office to make an appointment.

You will need to provide evidence of your name and surname, date of birth and nationality. In addition you also need to provide evidence of your place of residence and anything relating to a previous marriage or civil partnership in the form of a decree absolute or decree of nullity or dissolution order, or a death certificate together with the marriage / civil partnership certificate. All documents must be original - photocopies are not acceptable. Any document which is in a foreign language must be accompanied by an English translation.

See this list of acceptable documents but many couples bring their passport and their photo driving licence.

A fee is payable at the time of giving your notices of marriage or civil partnership.

Once given, your notices of marriage are displayed for 28 clear days on the public notice board at the Harrogate Register office (Bilton House), and unless there are special circumstances, the wedding cannot take place until after that time. 

Notice of marriage or civil partnership - frequently asked questions

This page was last updated on 18 January 2017