Your legal obligations as a couple:

As I discuss in the video, I cannot offer you a legally binding ceremony that can register your marriage. Only a registrar or licenced minister can do this for you in a venue licenced under Marriage Law.

So how do my couples go about their legal obligations when preparing for their celebrant led ceremony?

Well…. there are several ways….

 

Most couples choose to completely distance themselves from the legal registration part, putting their full focus on their Celebrant-led Ceremony as their ‘Wedding Day’.  For these couples, they generally choose a legal Statutory Marriage in order to fulfil their legal requirement.  For some, they even call this the ‘Marriage admin day’ which does tickle me!!

Now, a Statutory Marriage is the legal registration of marriage that takes place in the office of a registrar. No ceremony is involved, and it is about £50, so very cost effective!  After giving notice of your marriage (and paying the fee accordingly, normally around £35 each) both you and your partner arrive on the date and time allocated, with two witnesses, make your legal declarations, say your contractual vows, and sign the register.  Ta-dah…. it is done!  However…. and this is a big however, various register offices operate in differing ways – and around the Essex and Suffolk areas you will most likely have to specifically ask for a Statutory Marriage as they’ll not offer it freely.

 

Another way to fulfil your legal marriage requirements is to incorporate it into a ‘Weekend of Weddings!’  Yes…. you essentially have two ceremonies.

The first may be a small, intimate occasion with just immediate family or parentals – whether you dress in your full get-up is your call.  Perhaps afterwards you all head out for a meal, or choose to party in your own style.  The next day, you have your celebrant-led ceremony, which may essentially be the ‘Blessing’ of your marriage, whereby you can invite absolutely everyone and incorporate whatever rituals you like in a venue or location of your choice.  It’s a weekend of fun, frolicks, and LOVE!

 

If you have any questions about any of these tricky details, please do get in touch :)