What is a civil marriage?
In Jersey, a civil marriage:
- is conducted by the States of Jersey Superintendent Registrar or one of her deputies or delegates
- can only be conducted in approved venues, eg the Register Office or an approved premises
- cannot be performed in the open air
- is not a religious ceremony and therefore must have no religious content (no religious music or readings and no words drawn from the Anglican marriage service)
- can only take place between a heterosexual couple, both of whom are free to marry (same sex couples can enter into a civil partnership)
Where you can have a civil or non-religious marriage
A civil marriage can only be performed:
If you're planning to get married on a Saturday during May to September, you should check with the Superintendent Registrar before booking a time with the venue.
List of approved premises in Jersey for civil weddings
Marriages at the Register Office
Bookings for marriages at the Register Office are made at half-hourly intervals, usually between 11am and 1pm on weekdays.
You can get married at a later time on Saturday afternoons at the discretion of the Superintendent Registrar, but there will be an increased licence fee.
You can’t get married at the Register Office on Sundays and public holidays.
Steps to organise a civil or non-religious marriage
To organise a civil marriage, you should follow the steps below.
|1||Up to one year||Book your wedding with the approved premises and Register Office|
|2||Up to three months but no less than two clear weeks (the Superintendent Registrar will usually ask you to come back about a month before the wedding)||Give notice by visiting the Register Office in person|
|3||Between three months and one month||Book a meeting with the registrar of the parish you're marrying in, once you've given notice|
|4||Between two weeks and two working days (usually three working days)||Collect your marriage licence|
|5||On the day you collect your marriage licence||Take your licence to the parish registrar|
|6||The wedding day||You'll be presented with your marriage certificate at the end of the ceremony|
Step one: booking your wedding with the Register Office
You can book your wedding up to a year in advance with the Register Office. If you're going to marry in an approved premise, you'll need to have a confirmed time and date before going to the Register Office.
Once you've made your appointment, the Superintendent Registrar will give you a marriage appointment slip and ask you to contact the registrar of the parish you're marrying in, unless the wedding is in St Helier. This is usually once you've given notice.
If you're not a British citizen or a citizen of a country which is a member state of the EEA, you'll need to check with the Jersey Customs and Immigration Service about your visa status before you go to the Register Office.
Each applicant is required to supply original or certified copies of the following documentation:
- Birth certificate or adoption certificate
- Divorce decree absolute(s) (if applicable)
- Deed poll(s) (if applicable)
- Passport or national identity cards
You'll need to go to the Register Office and take with you:
- the date, time and location of your wedding
- you and your partner's full birth certificates, including your parent's names
- your divorce Decree Absolute / dissolution of civil partnership (if you've been married or in a civil partnership previously)
- death certificate of your late spouse / civil partner (if you've been widowed)
- supporting documents if you've changed your name by deed poll or statutory declaration
The documents must be originals or certified copies issued by a Register Office or court. We don’t accept photocopies, scans or laminated certificates.
All documents in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by an officially-certified English translation. The Superintendent Registrar will need both the original document and the translation.
Steps two and three: giving notice that you intend to marry
Giving notice is the first legal stage of arranging your civil wedding.
The maximum period of notice is three months and the minimum is two clear weeks. The Superintendent Registrar will usually ask you to come back about a month before the wedding. If your wedding is only a few weeks away, it's likely you'll give notice at the same time as making the appointment.
To give notice, you must:
go to the Register Office in person (only one partner is needed)
take the appointment slip (given to you by the Register Office when you made the booking), plus any other documentation you were instructed to take
pay the giving notice fee of £70
You'll be entered into the ‘Announcements of Marriage’ book, and your names will be publicly displayed in the Register Office.
Once you've given notice, you'll need to book a meeting with the registrar of the parish you're marrying in.
Step four: getting a marriage licence
Your marriage licence can only be issued between two weeks and two working days before the wedding. At least seven days of the notice period must have expired before you can collect your licence.
The usual period of time for the licence to be issued is three working days before the wedding.
To collect your licence, you must:
go to the Register Office in person (only one partner is needed)
pay the licence fee quoted on the marriage appointment slip (between £130 and £230)
take the appointment slip (given to you by the Register Office when you made the booking), plus any other documentation you're instructed to take
Step five: taking your licence to the registrar
When your marriage licence is issued to you, you need to go to the registrar of the parish where you're getting married in order to give them your marriage licence and the fee.
The parish registrar will prepare all the documents to be signed at the wedding and deliver them to the person conducting your ceremony.
They'll also enter your wedding into the marriage register.
You'll need to:
List of Parish Registrars
make a prior arrangement to meet him / her
take your marriage licence together with all the papers handed over by the Superintendent Registrar
pay the certificate fee of £60 in cash, or £80 if you need two certificates (in St Helier you can also pay by cheque, but not by card)
Step six: your wedding day
Your marriage ceremony will be conducted by the Superintendent Registrar, her deputy or her delegate with all the documentation from the parish registrar.
You'll be presented with your marriage certificate(s) at the end of the ceremony.