What is a Marriage
Certificate and Why is it Needed?
Certificate is the proof of registration of a marriage. The need for a Marriage
Certificate arises in case you need to prove that you are legally married to
someone, for purposes like obtaining a passport, changing your maiden name,
In India, a marriage
can be registered under either of the two Marriage Acts: the
Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 or the Special
Marriage Act, 1954. To be eligible for marriage, the minimum age limit is
21 for males and 18 for females. The parties to a hindu marriage should be
unmarried or divorced, or if previously married, the spouse by that marriage
should not be alive. In addition, the parties should be physically and mentally
healthy and must not be related in a way prohibited by the law.
The Hindu Marriage
Act is applicable only to the Hindus, whereas the Special Marriage Act is
applicable to all citizens of India.
The Hindu Marriage
Act provides for registration of an already solemnised marriage. It does not
provide for solemnisation of a marriage by the Registrar. The Special Marriage
Act provides for solemnisation of a marriage as well as registration by a
What You Need to Do
to Obtain a Marriage Certificate
Under the Hindu
Parties to the
marriage have to apply to the Registrar in whose jurisdiction the marriage is
solemnised or to the Registrar in whose jurisdiction either party to the
marriage has been residing at least for six months immediately preceding the
date of marriage. Both the parties have to appear before the Registrar along
with their parents or guardians or other witnesses within one month from the
date of marriage. There is a provision for condonation of delay up to 5 years,
by the Registrar, and thereafter by the District Registrar concerned.
Under the Special
The parties to the
intended marriage have to give a notice to the Marriage Officer in whose
jurisdiction at least one of the parties has resided for not less than 30 days
prior to the date of notice. It should be affixed at some conspicuous place in
his office. If either of the parties is residing in the area of another
Marriage Officer, a copy of the notice should be sent to him for similar
publication. The marriage may be solemnised after the expiry of one month from
the date of publication of the notice, if no objections are received. If any
objections are received, the Marriage Officer has to enquire into them and take
a decision either to solemnise the marriage or to refuse it. Registration will
be done after solemnisation of the marriage.
Any marriage already celebrated can also be registered
under the Special Marriage Act after giving a public notice of 30 days, subject
to conditions. However, as stated above, the bridegroom and the bride must
have completed 21 years and 18 years of age respectively.
Select a State to Download the Marriage Certificate, for that State.