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Checklist for Marriage Registration

Marriage registration should be a top priority on your wedding to-do list. Here's everything you need to know about planning your wedding in India.

When it comes to getting married, there are checklist for marriage registration. However, you should not overlook the legal obligations that must be met on time to validate these traditional rules and customs. Getting your marriage registered according to Indian laws is critical. Marriage registration not only provides legal recognition to the partnership but also provides certain assurances to both the spouse and the husband in the event that something happens to go wrong. But before diving into the subject, as a pair, you should be aware of a few topics to address before getting married in India, such as their work ethics, expenses, culture, their past, health, religious beliefs, and so on.

Moreover, in the event of a divorce, a legally registered marriage makes the process of dividing assets go more smoothly. Furthermore, if either the husband or the wife passes away, a legally recognized marriage makes life easier for the surviving life partner. If further security is required in the event of the death of a spouse, the living partner must sign a marriage testament. Let’s also look at ways to see if your marriage is legally recognized.

Conditions for Marriage

Here are the conditions for marriage under the Special Marriage Act:

  • Either party should not have a subsisting marriage
  • The groom must be at least 21 years old and the bride must be at least 18 years old
  • The parties must give free consent and be in a sound state of mind
  • The parties must not fall under the degrees of prohibited relationship
  • The marriage must be solemnized before a marriage officer
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About Marriage Certificate Issuance:

A marriage certificate is an official document that serves as legal proof of marriage between two individuals. It is typically issued by a government authority, such as a registry office or a municipal corporation, after the marriage ceremony has taken place and the necessary formalities have been completed. The issuance of a marriage certificate is important as it establishes the legal status of the marriage and provides evidence of marital union for various purposes, including legal, financial, and social matters. The process for obtaining a marriage certificate may vary depending on the jurisdiction, but it generally involves submitting an application form along with the required documents and fees, and then completing any additional steps as mandated by the issuing authority.

Documents Required:

  • The documents required for obtaining a marriage certificate may vary depending on the specific requirements of the issuing authority and the jurisdiction in which the marriage took place. However, common documents typically requested include:
  • Completed application form for marriage certificate issuance.
  • Proof of identity and age of both spouses, such as passports, driver’s licenses, or birth certificates.
  • Proof of residence, which may include utility bills, rental agreements, or voter ID cards.
  • Marriage invitation card or marriage registration form.
  • Affidavit of marriage, if applicable.
  • Photographs of the bride and groom.

Any additional documents as required by local regulations or specific circumstances.

  • It’s essential to check with the relevant authority or website for the specific list of documents required in your jurisdiction to ensure a smooth and successful application process.

Here are the Checklist for Marriage Registration:

1. Get a Marriage Certificate

You may be wondering why a marriage certificate is required in India. It is because a marriage certificate is regarded as an official agreement or an authorized certificate which indicates that two people (a man and a woman) have been recognized by society to live together for the rest of their lives and lead the family’s subsequent generations.

The very first step itself is to obtain an official marriage document. The procedures differ from one state to the next, and even from one city to the next! You must ensure that you follow the laws of the state in which you reside, in this regard. 

To obtain the declaration, you will need to provide lawfully issued identification cards, proof of marriage, and a number of witnesses/observers to vouch for you. You’ll also have to pay a small registration fee. 

2. Does Religion Matter?

Depending on your religion, if both partners are Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, or Buddhists.  your marriage will be registered under the Hindu Marriage Act or the Special Marriage Act. 

In any case, your marriage can be solely registered under the Special Marriage Act if either of you is a Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or Parsi. 

While enrolling under any of these Acts would not normally have a long-term impact on your life, there are certain differences in the enrolment method for both. 

3. Request for a Name or Surname Change

A name or surname change must be requested through the State Government Gazette. This enables them to include your new name or surname in their records. Further, make it official by declaring it in local newspapers through paper-cutting. In case you would prefer to not pursue this procedure, a Joint Notarized Affidavit from a legal official is sufficient for this reason. 

Thereafter, your name will be changed in all the necessary government documents like PAN card, Aadhar card, bank records, etc. However, these days a lot of couples prefer sticking to their original names and surnames.

4. Offline Marriage Registration in India

According to the Hindu Marriage Act, both the husband and wife must apply to the sub-registrar in whose ward the marriage was sanctified, or to the registration centre in whose purview either life partner has lived for at least 6 months.

Under the Special Marriage Act, both spouses must send a 30-day notification to the sub-enlistment centre in the vicinity of the area where one of the partners has lived. Following which a duplicate of this notice is posted on the sub-registrar office bulletin board for at least 30 days. In case, both of the spouses are dwelling under another sub registrar’s purview, a copy of the notice must be sent to him as well. 

In the event that there is no opposition to the marriage during these 30 days, the marriage is then registered. 
  • Documents necessary to be submitted while submitting an application for marriage registration in India –
  • Application form signed by both the spouses. The forms can be downloaded online for instance under Hindu Marriage Act and under the Special Marriage Act.
  • Location proof of both spouses such as PAN card, passport, Aadhaar card, or driving license
  • Date of birth proof of both spouses in the form of PAN card, passport, Aadhaar card, or driving license
  • Affidavit stating the place and date of marriage, marital status at the time of marriage, date of birth of both parties and nationalities of both parties
  • Affidavit affirming location and date of marriage, marital status at the time of marriage, date of birth of both the partners and nationalities
  • Passport-sized photos of both spouses and one certified wedding photo of them as  husband-wife
  • Marriage invitation card with the name of both the partners, place and date of marriage
  • A certificate duly signed by the priest who sanctified the marriage
  • Certificate of changes for instance, in the name; religion; etc. if relevant
  • Copy of the divorce order, if appropriate
  • Death certificate of husband or wife, if either partner is a widow or widower.
  • Two eyewitnesses at the time of the marriage registration were available at your wedding.

5. Online Marriage Registration in India

Don’t worry if you’re worried about having to go to government offices on multiple occasions. You can save time by beginning the process online with the help of the experts at Vakilsearch

The Delhi government website details the process for all couples in the community to enroll in online marriages. You are required to:

  • Pick your district
  • Fill in your spouse’s details
  • Fill in the required form online.

After this procedure, you will be given an appointment for a specific date. This will be roughly 15 days after submission under the Hindu Marriage Act. Under the Special Marriage Act, the scheduled time can be as long as 60 days. Upon the arrival of the official meeting day, you will be required to show all the required document proofs, which have been referenced above, and two eyewitnesses who went to your wedding. And now we have covered the entire process of checklist for marriage registration in India.

How to Obtain an Online Marriage Certificate in Karnataka

In Karnataka, obtaining a marriage certificate has become a streamlined process with the availability of online services. Whether you’re newly married or need to update your marital status officially, applying for and downloading a marriage certificate online is now convenient and efficient. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the process:

Step 1: Access the Online Portal

Begin by visiting the official website designated for marriage certificate services in Karnataka. Ensure that you are using a secure and trusted platform provided by the government.

Step 2: Register an Account

If you’re a new user, you’ll need to register an account on the portal. Provide the required details accurately, including your personal information and contact details. Once registered, you can proceed to log in to your account.

Step 3: Apply for Marriage Certificate

Navigate to the section for applying for a marriage certificate. Fill out the online application form with all necessary details, including the names of the spouses, date and place of marriage, and other relevant information. Double-check the accuracy of the provided information before submission.

Step 4: Upload Required Documents

As part of the application process, you’ll be prompted to upload scanned copies of the necessary documents, such as identity proofs, proof of marriage, and photographs. Ensure that the documents meet the specified requirements in terms of format and size.

Step 5: Pay the Fees

Once the application is submitted, you’ll be directed to the payment gateway to complete the fee payment for processing the marriage certificate. Accepted payment methods may include debit/credit cards, net banking, or other online payment options.

Step 6: Track Application Status

After successfully submitting the application and payment, you can track the status of your application online. The portal should provide updates on the progress of your application, from processing to issuance.

Step 7: Download Marriage Certificate Online

Once the marriage certificate is processed and approved, you’ll receive a notification indicating that it’s ready for download. Log in to your account, locate the certificate section, and download the marriage certificate in the prescribed format.

Step 8: Marriage Certificate Check Online

After downloading the marriage certificate, you can verify its authenticity by performing a marriage certificate check online. The portal may offer a verification tool where you can enter the certificate details to confirm its validity.

By following these steps, you can easily apply for, download, and verify your marriage certificate online in Karnataka. This streamlined process saves time and effort, ensuring that your marital status is officially recognized and documented as per legal requirements.


1. How long does the registration process take under the Special Marriage Act?

The registration process under the Special Marriage Act takes around 30 days. The couple has to give a 30-day notice to the sub-registrar under whose jurisdiction any of the partners reside. The registrar puts up a notice on the board for 30 days, and if there is no objection within the duration, the marriage gets registered.

2. Are interfaith marriages registered under the Special Marriage Act?

Yes, interfaith marriages can be registered under the Special Marriage Act. Irrespective of their religion, all the citizens of India can get their marriage registered under the Special Marriage Act of 1954.

3. Is a religious ceremony required for a marriage under the Special Marriage Act?

No, a religious ceremony is not required for a marriage under the Special Marriage Act. The Act of 1954 is an alternative for those who are not eligible to register their marriage under the various personal laws in India.

4. What is the validity period of the notice of intended marriage?

The validity period of the notice of intended marriage is 30 days. The couple has to give a 30-day notice to the sub-registrar under whose jurisdiction any of the partners reside. The registrar puts up a notice on the board for 30 days, and if there is no objection within the duration, the marriage gets registered.

5. Can foreign nationals register their marriage in India under the Special Marriage Act?

Yes, foreign nationals can register their marriage in India under the Special Marriage Act. The couple has to give a 30-day notice to the sub-registrar under whose jurisdiction any of the partners reside. The registrar puts up a notice on the board for 30 days, and if there is no objection within the duration, the marriage gets registered.

6. Is a marriage certificate issued immediately after the registration under the Special Marriage Act?

No, a marriage certificate is not issued immediately after the registration under the Special Marriage Act. After the 30-day notice period, the marriage officer solemnizes the marriage and issues a certificate of marriage.

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