Do we need to get a Wedding Licence?
Is it easy to get one?
How to get your Wedding Licence
Most important thing to note
You can purchase a Marriage Licence in Ontario no more than three months prior to your wedding date. Wedding Licences are valid for 90 days. So don’t get it too early in the process.
How do I obtain a Marriage Licence Application?
A Marriage Licence can be obtained from the clerk of most cities, townships, towns or villages – check your municipal blue pages or the Application can be downloaded from the Ontario Government Website, or the links below.
The licence is valid for use anywhere in the province of Ontario.
One or both of the persons being married must apply in person to the Marriage Licence Issuer to obtain a licence. You will need to bring identification, such as a birth certificate (along with any change of name certificates), current passport, Record of Immigrant Landing or Canadian citizenship card, along with photo identification, for both the persons.
There is a set fee for purchasing a Marriage Licence. Contact your municipal office for the current fee. The current fee in the City of Stratford is $125.
What if one or both or us have been divorced?
If one or both members of the couple are divorced, documentation relating to each divorce will be required. If you live and were divorced in Canada, you must bring the original or court-certified copy of the final decree, final judgment or certificate of divorce to your local municipal office when you are purchasing the marriage licence.
If you live or were divorced outside of Canada, you may be required to submit documents to the Provincial Government several weeks prior to applying for a licence. Contact your local municipal office for further information or check the Ontario Government Website for additional requirements on Getting Remarried in Ontario after a Divorce.
Do we automatically receive notification that our marriage has been registered?
No, there is no automatic notification of your marriage registration. To have proof that the Province of Ontario has registered your marriage, you need to purchase a Marriage Certificate. You can order a marriage certificate about 6-8 weeks after your wedding date.
A Marriage Certificate is a legal record of your marriage. It lists the date and place of the marriage, and names of the people who were married.
At your marriage ceremony, you will be given the Record of Solemnization of Marriage from the Officiant. It is considered a souvenir document and not a legal record. The official who performed your marriage will forward the Marriage Licence you signed on your wedding day to the Office of the Registrar General for registration.
How do I obtain a Marriage Certificate?
A marriage certificate is a legal record of your marriage.
You can order a marriage certificate about 6-8 weeks after the date of your marriage. You will have two options; you may purchase a “file size” (which includes basic information such as name, date and place of marriage) or “Long Form” (which is a certified copy of the marriage licence signed on your wedding day).
You can purchase your Marriage Certificate online or you can complete the Request for Marriage Certificate and then mail or fax the application with the appropriate fees to the Office of the Registrar General in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Before, During and After a Marriage Ceremony
Signed by: the couple, the two witnesses, and the Officiant.
- The top part (Parts 1 and 2) is filled out by the city clerk and signed by the couple where it asks for the signatures of the applicant and joint applicant.
- The bottom part (Part 3) is completed by the Officiant and is signed by the couple, the witnesses, and the Officiant.
- When the license is completed (Sections 40 – 53 must be completed) and signed by all parties, the Officiant puts it in the self-addressed envelope that accompanied the licence and mails it to the Registrar General.
Note: Officiant can copy the license before mailing it for their records, but it is not necessary.
- Signed by the couple, the two witnesses, and the Officiant
- The top part (the information about each partner) must be completed by Officiant or the couple. This information provided must match what is on their marriage license.
- The bottom part (place & address of marriage, wedding date, marriage license number, city where license was issued, and date license was issued) is completed and signed by the Officiant.
- Officiant is responsible for and keeps the Marriage Register.
Record of Solemnization
• Completed and signed by the Officiant. Two witnesses over the age of 18 must also sign. The couple does not sign this document. The Record is kept by the couple after the ceremony.
• Optional document that the couple can order from the Registrar General about 12 weeks after their wedding date. The Certificate can be ordered by completing and mailing in the form given to them when they got their license, or they can apply online.
Note: A Certificate of Marriage is not needed if one partner assumes the surname of the other. If, however, one partner wants their surname changed on their driver’s license, passport, or other official document, then a Certificate will be needed.