Giving notice

Having made the important decision of setting the date and venue for your ceremony, you will both need to carry out legal preliminaries called "giving notice" of your intention to marry or form a civil partnership. This will involve each of you attending the register office which governs the area in which you live, by appointment, to give basic personal details about yourselves and to declare that you are legally free to marry or form a civil partnership. Your ceremony must take place within 12 months from the date you give notice.

How to give notice

Before either of you can give notice, you must both have lived at your address for a minimum of seven complete days before the date that either notice is given, eg if you move to a new registration district before you are due to give notice, the day on which you move does not count as part of the seven days residence requirement.

If you live in two different registration districts, you must each give notice to your own local register office. Nottinghamshire is classed as one registration district, while Nottingham City is another.

If your chosen ceremony venue is outside your district(s) of residence, you should first contact the register office for that venue to check availability of dates.

Once you have given notice there is a waiting period of 15 consecutive days before the ceremony can take place (during which time your notices will be publicly displayed at the register office). From 2nd March 2015 the waiting period will increase to 28 days.

If marrying or forming a civil partnership outside your district(s) of residence, you will be advised to collect your authorities from the office where you gave notice, after the statutory 15 days or 28 days (2nd March onwards) has elapsed. These documents (one for each of you) are the legal authorisation for your marriage or civil partnership to proceed and must be delivered to the Superintendent Registrar of the district (or the officiating minister of the church) in which you are to be married or form your civil partnership, before the day of your ceremony.

There is a statutory fee to give notice. This is not a deposit on your ceremony.

Documents you will need to produce

Evidence of your name, age, nationality and gender

For this, you could provide your current passport or full birth certificate.

For the purposes of nationality, if you are producing a birth certificate (instead of a current passport) and you were born in the United Kingdom on or after 1 January 1983, we will also need to see the birth certificate of your mother.

Evidence of your current address

In order of preference, we will need to see: a recent (2 to 3 months old) utility bill, bank statement, telephone bill, Council Tax notice, driving licence or medical card.

If you have been married or formed a civil partnership before

If you have been married or registered a civil partnership previously, in any country, you will be required to show evidence of your divorce or the death of your late spouse/civil partner. If the divorce took place in England or Wales, you will need to produce a Decree Absolute bearing the official stamp of the court. If that divorce was granted abroad, we will need to see the original documents issued. If these documents are written in a foreign language, an English translation may be required.

Documents may include: Decree Absolute, Dissolution of Civil Partnership, Decree of Nullity, Death certificate of former partner and (depending on your circumstances) previous marriage certificate .

If you are under the age of 18

If either of you is under 18 years of age, you will be required to show proof that your parents or guardians have consented to your marriage. If your parents are now divorced we will need to see the Decree Absolute and the court order determining legal custody of you.

All documents must be originals. For further advice or clarification please contact your local registration office.

Make an appointment

Contact your local registration office to make an appointment to give notice.

Conversion of Civil Partnership to Marriage

From 10th December 2014 if you are in a civil partnership you will be able to convert it to a marriage, should you wish to do so.

For more information click here.