Marriage and civil partnership ceremony guidance
News on updated government guidance and how it could affect your ceremony.
The information on this page identifies the immigration control requirements when looking to register a notice of marriage. Click on the headings to find out more about each option.
You can find out which countries are EEA members on the Gov.UK website.
Are you subject to immigration control?
You're subject to immigration control if you aren't:
- An EEA or Swiss national
- Exempt from immigration control, by reason of military or diplomatic exemption, or have right of abode and have the appropriate stamp/visa to evidence this
In this case, if one or both of you are subject to immigration control you'll both have to give your notices of marriage to a registrar in a designated register office, of which there are 75 in England and Wales. Our office in Shrewsbury is a designated register office.
If you're subject to immigration control, you'll be asked to pay £35 each for your notice of marriage at the time that you make your appointment booking. Payment will be taken by card from you. An appointment won't be booked unless payment is received in advance (find out more about our full advance charging policy on the marriage and civil partnership fees page).
You'll need to provide all of the prescribed evidence required by law in relation to marital status and residence. In addition, both parties to the marriage will need to provide a passport-sized colour photograph to the registrar at the time of notice; the usual restrictions and requirements for passport photographs apply.
If you're subject to immigration control you should be aware that you documents will be scrutinised for evidence of your immigration status.
If you don't have a valid marriage, fiancé or civil partnership visa, indefinite leave to remain or indefinite leave to enter or right of abode, or are not a British/Swiss or EEA citizen, the notices of marriage given by you and your partner will be referred directly to the Home Office.
Referral to the Home Office is automatic, and the waiting period before you can marry can be extended from 28 days to 70 days at the discretion of the Home Office. Failure to comply with any investigation by the Home Office may result in refusal to issue an authority for your marriage to go ahead. In addition, the cost of your notice of marriage will be £47, and not £35 each. You'll be asked to pay the additional £12 each at the time of your notice of marriage appointment.
Also, if your usual address is not the place of residence which you state at the time you give notice, you'll need to give details of your usual address, and if your usual address is outside the UK you'll need to provide UK contact details.
If you've used or do use any aliases you'll be required to provide details of these other names, and also to provide a statement relating to the use of them.
Not subject to immigration control?
If you're a non EEA or Swiss national, you're not subject to immigration control if you have any of the following exemptions:
- Right of abode
- A military exemption
- A diplomatic exemption
You must be able to provide evidence in the form of stamps and visas of your immigration status. This evidence can be in either your current or an expired passport. If the evidence is in an expired passport please bring this along to your appointment with the registrar, along with your current valid passport.
You must produce a valid passport which shows your stamp/visa. If your stamp or visa is in an expired passport you'll need to bring that along with you. If you're able to provide this evidence of your immigration status, and are marrying someone with the same immigration status, or someone who is a British/EEA/Swiss national, you won't have to give notice at a designated register office - you'll be able to give notice at your local register office.
If you're unable to provide the registrar with the document containing your stamp/visa you'll have to give notice in a designated register office, and will be subject to referral to the Home Office Immigration Service, for which you'll need to provide passport-sized photographs to the registrar at the time you give notice. The usual restrictions and requirements for passport photographs apply.
Immigration - housing inspection service
Our Community Protection team carries out immigration housing inspections for a fee.