Giving notice of marriage / civil partnership

Before you begin

To give notice of your intention to marry or form a civil partnership in England and Wales, both parties must be:

  • Over the age of 18
  • British or Irish nationals
  • Usually reside in England or Wales
  • Have European Union settled status, pre-settled status, or have a pending EUSS application submitted before 1st June 2021 and can provide a relevant Share Code from the Home Office (you will need to bring the Share Code to the notice of marriage appointment)..

If either party is a national from a country outside of the EU, you will need to refer to the guidance for non-EU nationals.

How does it work?

By law you need to register your intent to marry at your local register office in the district in which you live, unless you are getting married in a Church of England or Church in Wales -  see religious ceremonies.

Once you have attended your notice of marriage appointment, the notice will be displayed publicly for 28 clear days in Wigan Register Office.

28 days after your notice of marriage appointment, the marriage or civil partnership schedule can be issued. These are only valid for use in the venue stated. If you change your venue after giving notice, you will need to give a new notice and go through the process again.

Your marriage cannot go ahead unless a notice of marriage has been completed.

Where should we give notice?

You should give your notices at the register office where you live (or have lived for the previous 8 days).

If you live in Wigan or Leigh (meaning the property where you live pays Council Tax to Wigan Council), there are two register office’s that you can attend at the following locations:

When should we give notice?

The minimum time between giving notice and getting married is 28 clear days. Notices are valid for one year from the date given, so the earliest a notice can be given is exactly a year before. We recommend you give notice within 10 months of your ceremony but no later than 8 weeks before.

A marriage cannot take place until 28 full days after you have given the notice, for example, if notice is given on 1st October the ceremony may take place on or after 30th October.

How much will it cost?

There is a non-refundable booking fee of £35 per person to give notice of marriage (£70 per wedding/civil partnership).

The cost of giving notice if you are subject to immigration control is £47 for each party (£94 per couple). This payment is made when booking your appointment.

What information do I need to bring when I give notice?

At your appointment you will need to provide evidence of your name, age, nationality, marital status and address. If the correct documents are not presented at your appointment we are unable to take your notice - you will need to make book and pay for another appointment.

Only original documents are accepted, we cannot accept photocopies. However, where proof of address is required, a printed copy of an electronic bill or bank statement is acceptable.

If you have a Decree Absolute in PDF form, this must be printed and brought to the appointment

If you have a foreign divorce, please contact the registrars team for further information. Your Notice of Marriage must be booked for the Wigan Register Office only.

Booking an appointment

Before making an appointment with us, please be aware that:

  • You do not need to attend the appointment together, but you must both give your own individual notice of marriage. You can book an appointment for one or both of you to attend.
  • You must arrive 10 minutes before your appointment time and allow at least one full working days' notice if you wish to change or cancel your appointment
  • You must ensure that you have already booked the registrar for your ceremony 
  • If you're getting married in another district you must ensure that the registrar is available for the date and time you require before giving notice with us.
  • Book an appointment to give notice.

Getting a passport in your new name

You can change your name on your passport before you get married by completing the form below and getting this signed by a registrar. 

Complete your section of the form and hand it in at Wigan Register Office no more than 3 months before your ceremony date. We will complete the outstanding sections of the form and will post your form out to your home address within 24 hours.

There is a £20 fee for this, payable by card only when you hand your form in.

Non EU Nationals

If either party to the marriage or civil partnership is a national of an EU country and does not have settled or pre-settled status (or a pending application), or national of a non EU country you may be subject to immigration control.

This means you must give your notices together at the Register Office covering the district in which you have both lived for the preceding eight days. If you both live in different registration districts you must give your notices together at either Register Office. 

Non EU Nationals – What to do next

You will need to provide additional documentation as evidence of your immigration status, please complete the Designated Notice of Marriage appointment form and a member of the Registrars Team will be in contact with you to discuss the documentation you will need.  A Notice of Marriage appointment will then be made for you.

Please note Registrars cannot give immigration advice.

Abuse of immigration laws

We are working with the UK Border Agency 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.

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