Legal preliminaries for marriages
Before you can get married, you need to make an appointment to give ‘notice’. This is where you state formally that you intend to get married and provide documentation to prove your name, address, nationality, age and freedom to marry.
You can use our online form to find out exactly what documents you need to bring to the appointment or download the evidence list by clicking here. Please bring original documents not photocopies.
Notice must be given in person by both partners. If you live in the same district you should try to attend a joint appointment. If you live in different districts you should try to give notice within seven days of each other. If you fail to give notice the marriage cannot take place. We recommend you give notice six-nine months before your ceremony date. Please be aware appointments do get booked up so try and book early.
If you live in England or Wales but outside Norfolk you will need to contact your local registration office as the appointment must take place in the registration district that you live in. If you live in Norfolk click here to view a list of local registration offices.
If you live outside of England or Wales and are marrying in Norfolk please email email@example.com for more information.
The standard period between giving notice and getting married is 28 clear days. This may be extended up to 70 days if you have had a foreign divorce. Some foreign divorces will be referred to the General Register Office. It can take up to six weeks for a decision and we advise that this possible delay should be factored into your plans. If both partners have a foreign divorce please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Are you subject to immigration control?
When one or both parties are subject to immigration control you must give notice together at a designated registration office - all Norfolk registration offices are designated. There are other designated offices throughout England and Wales.
You are likely to be subject to immigration control if:
- You are not British
- You are not from the EEA or a Swiss National
- You do not have diplomatic status
- You do not have a of right of abode
- You are not a member of visiting armed forces
The notice period may be extended from 28 days to 70 days if one or both parties is a non-UK or non-EEA national.
For further information regarding immigration status please telephone the Home Office on 0870 606 7766 or visit their website www.ind.homeoffice.gov.uk