Documents we need to see

When giving your notice of marriage you are required to show certain documents as proof of identity, nationality, age, address and marital status.

Before making an appointment to give notice, please make sure that you have read and understood all the information on this page, particularly the information about what you need to bring with you to the notice appointment. Failure to bring the correct documentation to your appointment will mean you will have to book and pay for a new appointment.

The following list shows what is acceptable for your notice.

Evidence of name, surname, date of birth and nationality

The following original documents (one or multiple documents) must be provided as evidence. Photocopies are not acceptable.

  1. A valid passport
  2. If you were born in the United Kingdom before 1 January 1983
    • a United Kingdom birth certificate and one of the first five documents listed under evidence required as proof of address
  3. If you were born in the United Kingdom on or after 1 January 1983 but before 1 July 2006
    • a full United Kingdom birth certificate showing parents’ details if your parents and one of the first five documents listed under evidence required as proof of address
    • Evidence of your mother’s British Citizenship or settled status at the time of your birth (eg a passport describing her as a British Citizen or indicating that she then had indefinite leave to enter or remain) or the above for your father providing your parents were married
    • Parents’ marriage certificate if using your father’s documentation
  4. If you were born in the United Kingdom on or after 1 July 2006
    • a full United Kingdom birth certificate showing parents’ details and one of the first six documents listed under evidence required as proof of address
    • evidence of either parents’ British citizenship or settled status at the time of your birth (eg a passport describing them as a British Citizen or indicating that he or she then had indefinite leave to enter or remain)
  5. Certificate or registration as a British Citizen granted by the Secretary of State and one of the first six documents listed under evidence required as proof of address
  6. Valid travel document issued in the United Kingdom at the discretion of the Secretary of State to persons who have been formally and, in the view of the Secretary of State, unreasonably, refused a passport by the authorities in their own countries and who have:
    • Limited leave to enter or remain or humanitarian protection on rejection of a claim for asylum or for the recognition as a stateless person; or
    • Been granted indefinite leave to remain
  7. Valid travel document issued pursuant to Article 28 of the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees done at Geneva on 28 July 1951
  8. Valid travel document issued pursuant to Article 28 of the Stateless Convention

Proof of address

  1. Utility bill dated no more than three months before the date on which notice is given
  2. Bank or building society statement or passbook dated no more than one month before the date on which notice is given
  3. Council tax bill dated no more than one year before the date on which notice is given.
  4. Mortgage statement dated no more than one year before the date on which notice is given.
  5. Valid UK driving licence in the name of the person giving notice (full or provisional licences are acceptable but all documents must be originals and photocopies will not be accepted)
  6. Letter from the owner or proprietor of the address which is the person’s place of residence – this letter cannot be used if you are producing a birth certificate as evidence of name and nationality. The letter must detail the following:
    1. Confirmation that the person has resided at the address for at least seven days immediately prior to the date on which the notice of marriage is given
    2. States that the person is the owner or proprietor
    3. States the name and address of the owner or proprietor and is signed and dated by that person.

Evidence of the ending of a previous marriage or civil partnership

You must provide original documentation to prove how the previous marriage or civil partnership ended (photocopies are not acceptable). If you have reverted back to a previous name since the divorce, you will need to provide a certified copy of the marriage or civil partnership to link it with the divorce document.

  1. Decree absolute of divorce or decree of nullity of marriage granted by a court of civil jurisdiction in England and Wales
  2. Dissolution order or nullity order obtained in England and Wales in accordance with Part 2 of the Civil Partnership Act
  3. A document or documents, confirming your divorce or annulment granted by a court of civil jurisdiction in any part of the British Islands
  4. A document or documents, confirming the dissolution or annulment of your civil partnership granted by a court of civil jurisdiction in the United Kingdom
  5. If you were born in the United Kingdom on or after 1 January 1983 but before 1 July 2006

Divorces that occurred outside the United Kingdom

If you were divorced in a foreign country, we will need to see the original document issued by that country and an English translation. All foreign divorce documents need to be checked thoroughly and from 1 November 2017 you are now required to pay a fee. This has been introduced by the General Register Office. This fee will be paid when you attend your appointment to give notice. The fee is none refundable, and is payable at the commencement of your appointment. You may be asked to provide subsequent documents following this check – however, there is no provision for a refund of this fee.   

The fees are £50 for consideration of a foreign divorce document by the Superintendent Registrar. This is dependent on the country. 

For consideration of a foreign divorce document by the General Register Office, the fee is £75. A photocopy of your original document will be photocopied and posted to the General Register Office during your notice appointment. Please note until the General Register Office confirms the document is acceptable you will not be able to have your legal ceremony.

Widows/widowers

If you are a widow or widower we will need to see a certified copy of your former spouse's death certificate and your marriage certificate.

Change of name

If you have changed your name by deed poll or statutory declaration we will need to see those documents. Please note that unless your deed poll has been registered with the Central Office of the Supreme Courts of Deeds at the Royal Courts of Justice you will be advised to register your previous name in addition to your current name on the marriage certificate.

If you are under 18

If either of you is under 18, we will need to see proof that your parents or guardian agree to the marriage. If your parents are divorced we may also need to see the court order that gives custody to one of them.

Proof of immigration status

Please note: In addition to the documents listed above proving your name, age and nationality, where you live and your marital status, if you are an EU national or a national from a non EU country you must also provide the documentation listed below.

EU Settled Status, EU Pre-Settled Status, Pending application for EU Settled Status

If you have applied for EU Settled Status you will need to prove this by:

  • Providing the unique 6 digit share code generated when you applied – you can access your code by visiting View and prove your immigration status on gov.uk
  • This is only available to those people who have EU Settled or EU Pre-Settled Status
  • You must provide this code at the time you make your notice appointment
  • Please note the share code is only valid for 30 days – your immigration status will be checked by the Registrars’ using this code – you cannot bring a paper copy confirming your status.

If you have a pending application for EU Settled Status you must provide your Certificate of Application in addition to the documents listed above. Your Certificate of Application can be a paper document or digital.

None British Citizens, Irish Citizens or EU Settled Status Citizens

For those persons who are not a British Citizen, Irish Citizen or have EU settled status you must provide proof of your settled status or your eligibility to marry.

You must both attend together to give your notice of marriage.

You should check at gov.uk for documents to prove settled status such asindefinite leave to remain, indefinite leave to enter or Right of abode. Documents that show settled status include:

  • Valid Home Office endorsement in passport
  • Valid UK residence permit in passport
  • Valid Biometric residence permit
  • Valid UK residence permit in passport
  • Valid UK visa/entry clearance in passport

If you are entering the UK for the purpose of marrying or entering into a civil partnership you must check with the UKVI that you have the correct visa to do so: this would usually be a marriage or civil partnership visa.

You must both attend together to give your notice of marriage in the district where you have resided for the previous seven full days. If you both live in different registration districts you must give your notices together at either Register Office.

You must have lived in a district within England and Wales for a minimum of seven full days immediately prior to giving your notice. You cannot move between districts in the seven full days immediately before the date on which your notice of marriage is given. For example if you are entering the country from abroad on the first of the month, the first possible date you could give your notice would be the ninth of the same month (giving seven clear days of residence prior to notice).

If you do not have the correct proof your marriage will be referred to the Home Office, who may decide to extend your notice period for 70 days if they wish to investigate further. The marriage cannot take place until approval is granted by the Home Office.

Photographs

Both of you will need to provide a passport photograph if either or both of you do not have settled status or if you have a marriage or civil partnership visa or are in scope of the referral and investigation scheme. Please see our legal requirements to get married page.

Each photograph must be a UK passport style and size and meet the following criteria:

  • It should clearly show your face with a neutral expression
  • You must not be wearing any head covering (other than for religious or medical reasons)
  • You must be photographed alone with no other person or object in shot
  • It should be unmarked, unaltered and without tears or creases
  • It must be a recent photo and show a current likeness

Salford Register Office is unable to offer any advice regarding immigration matters and therefore you must provide suitable evidence when giving your notices of marriage or civil partnership. If you cannot provide the correct documentation you will be referred to the Home Office under the referral and investigation scheme.

For any couple who is in scope of the referral scheme there is an increased fee to pay for the notice. If you have booked your appointment and paid the standard fee, and you do not have the appropriate immigration status you will need to pay the additional fee at the time of your appointment. Your notice will not be taken if you do not pay the appropriate fee.

Abuse of immigration laws

We are working with the Home Office to identify marriages and civil partnerships which seek to abuse UK immigration laws.

Anybody found to be arranging, facilitating or entering into a marriage or civil partnership solely to gain permission to stay in the UK risks arrest or prosecution. Foreign nationals may also face deportation and be barred from re-entering the UK for up to 14 years.

Marriages abroad

If you have been married in a foreign country, you only need to get married here if you think that marriage was not legal. If you decide to get married here we will need to see any documents issued by that country when you give us notice of your marriage.

If you have any problems producing these documents please contact the Register Office.

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