Before marriage or civil partnership ceremonies can take place, you must give notice in person that you intend to marry.
The minimum notice period is 29 days but we recommend giving notice as early as possible. You can give notice up to a year before the ceremony date. If you are getting married in the Church of England and banns are to be called, you do not usually need to contact us or give notice of your marriage.
You can only give notice if you are legally free to marry or enter into a civil partnership. In North Somerset, notice is restricted to British citizens or European Union nationals. If either party is not a British or an European Union national, notice must be given at a specially designated register office.
If you live in different registration districts, each person must give notice in the district where they live. We advise that the person living in the district where the ceremony will take place gives notice first. The second party will be expected to give notice within a few days.
To give notice you will need to provide:
- documentary evidence of your age, identity and nationality – a current valid passport is preferred
- proof of address – we accept driving licences, bank statements, council tax bills or letters from a government department
- if you have been married or in a civil partnership before, you need to confirm that you are free to marry again by providing one of the below. Please note that if documents are not in English, you will need to provide an English translation.
- decree of absolute divorce
- nullity bearing the court’s original stamp
- death certificate of your former spouse or civil partners
- documentary evidence that you have been resident for the minimum qualifying period