Notice of intent for marriage or civil partnership

Appointments to give Notice of intent for marriage or civil partnership

From 20 July notice of marriage/civil partnership can start again in our Registration Offices.  

We are prioritising these appointments in date order for the next few months. 

To book an appointment please call the registration operations team on 0300 303 2472 or email us at ceremonies@cumbria.gov.uk.

Over the coming months as our services start again they will be delivered differently to make sure we minimise the risks of infection for customers and staff as a result of COVID-19. 

Even with these restrictions we remain committed to providing the best customer experience possible and we thank you for your patience and support.

Legal Paperwork

In Cumbria you should have a provisional booking as above before completing your legal paperwork.

Before you can marry there are certain formalities required by law.  You must both attend the Register Office in the district in which you live to inform them of your intention to marry.  This is called "giving notice" and you must attend in person.

Giving notice of your intent to marry will take around 30 minutes per person.  You need to arrange an appointment in the registration district where you live.  You may live in different districts and so would attend separately.  If you both live in Cumbria your appointment to give notice of intent would be booked with us and you can usually book online.

Please remember if you don't both live within England or Wales then special arrangements will apply.  Please do not follow this guidance but refer to the section to the right of this screen on the sidebar entitled Residency.

Notice can only be given within 12 months of your planned ceremony as it is only valid for 12 months.  We recommend you give notice around 10-11 months prior to the booked date so that if you have any unforeseen reason to change the date the paperwork has some flexibility. 

When giving notice you are announcing your intent to marry and by historic law, the public have a right to object.  Any objection must be legal (such as you're still married or under age) rather than any personal reasons.

There is a period after your giving notice before the legal authorities for marriage can be produced to allow for such objections.  If both parties are British or citizens of the European Economic Area then this is 28 days with the paperwork authorised on the 29th day.  This can however take longer if there are any foreign papers to consider such as a divorce.

If either party is subject to immigration control this period of notice can be extended by the Home Office for up to 70 days and we cannot proceed with the ceremony until we have received their clearance.

What documents do I need for my appointment?

Giving notice of intent to marry is declaring that you are who you say you are and that you are both legally free to be married to each.  It requires you to provide certain documents and if you forget to bring these to the appointment we cannot proceed so it's really important you bring what you need with you.  The Officer who conducts the interview will make you feel as relaxed as possible and ask you a few questions about you and your partner.  You will both need to provide evidence of your full name, date of birth, nationality, current residence, consent form (if either of you is under 18 years of age), and (if previously married or in a civil partnership) proof of the end of that relationship. 

Please see the prescribed list of documents so you can check what you need to bring with you.

List of Documents required (In all cases)

  • If you are a foreign national subject to immigration control please contact our office for advice before booking any residency.
  • You will need documentation proving the place and duration of your residency along with appropriate documents listed below.

Evidence of Full Name, Date of Birth, and Nationality

Current and valid British, Swiss or EEA passport or Swiss or EEA identity card or:

If you were born in the United Kingdom before 1st January 1983 - your full birth certificate together with one of the following original documents -

  • A utility bill dated no more than 3 months before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A Bank/Building Society statement or passbook with your address on dated no more than 1 month before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A Council Tax Bill dated no more than 1 year before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A mortgage statement dated no more than 1 year before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A current residential tenancy agreement.
  • A valid driving licence.

 

If you were born in the United Kingdom after 1st January 1983 - your full birth certificate together with one of the following original documents -

  • A utility bill dated no more than 3 months before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A Bank/Building Society statement or passbook with your address on dated no more than 1 month before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A Council Tax Bill dated no more than 1 year before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A mortgage statement dated no more than 1 year before the date of your notice appointment.
  • A current residential tenancy agreement.
  • A valid driving licence.
  • PLUS evidence of either one of your parents British citizenship or settled status in the UK at the time of your birth (their full birth certificate or passport).  NB - If your parents were married at that time and your mother was not British then we also need to see their marriage certificate. If your parents were not married to each other at the time of your birth, your nationality will be that of your mother, so you must bring her documents.

Evidence of Ending of Previous Marriage/Civil Partnership (if applicable)

One of the following original documents:-

  • Court sealed certified copy of your Decree Absolute or Civil Partnership Absolute. Please note that for documents in a foreign language a translation should also be provided which must be certified, signed, and dated by the translator. 

  • The death certificate of your previous spouse or civil partner.

  • The presumed death certificate of your previous spouse or civil partner.

  • If a divorce/annulment/dissolution was granted outside of the British Isles then it will require consideration by the Local Registration Service or in some instances the General Register Office to establish if the ceremony can proceed.  This will incur a fee.  After consideration, if the ceremony cannot proceed the fees for consideration of the divorce/annulment/dissolution as well as the fees for giving notice of intent for marriage are non-refundable.

Evidence of Consent

If either of you is under the age of 18 years, you will need to produce a fully completed consent form (available from your local Register Office).

Additional Information

Currently their is a Notice Fee for each person and this is non-refundable and this is payable on the day of your notice appointment. Your Certificates for Authority to Marry will be issued a minimum of 28 days after giving your notice (or if you are subject to Immigration Control between 28 and 70 days).

  If any documents are not in English, you will need to obtain a full written translation.

Information regarding Residency Instructions

Additional Fees

If you require an urgent ceremony on health or other grounds please refer to the button bar on the right hand side of the screen "Emergency Ceremonies" or contact our team of expert Registration Officers for guidance and support at

Email  registrationservice@cumbria.gov.uk

Telephone 0300 303 2472

We recommend using the Email as the telephone lines are very busy. 

Firstly may we offer our congratulations!  We are delighted that you are considering Cumbria for your ceremony and can't wait to work with you to make your day special. Please visit Getting Married in Cumbria pages for all the information you need to plan your special day.