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Marriage In Scotland
Both of you must be at least 16 years of age.
You must not be related to one another in a way which would prevent you from marrying.
You must both be unmarried. If either of you have been previously married you must produce documentary evidence that your previous marriage ended by death, divorce or annulment.
You must not be of the same sex (at birth).
You must both be capable of understanding the nature of marriage and of consenting to marriage.
If you live outside the UK, your marriage in Scotland must be regarded as valid in the country in which you are domiciled (most countries do recognise marriages in Scotland, even when the bride or groom are 16 years old).
You can be married in Scotland by either religious ceremony or by civil ceremony. A religious marriage, whether Christian or non-Christian, can only be solemnised by a minister, clergyman, pastor, priest or other person entitled to do so under the Marriage (Scotland) Act, 1977.Religious Ceremonies
Religious ceremonies may be conducted at any time and in any place in Scotland so long as you can get an authorised religious celebrant to attend and officiate. Whether you want to get married in the romantic setting of a remote Scottish castle or on top of Ben Nevis, the choice is yours so long as you can find a minister and two witnesses to go along with you both. In Scottish churches, there is no provision for getting married by the publishing of banns.
Your marriage notice must be submitted early enough to allow the Registrar sufficient time to satisfy himself that you are both free to marry one another. Normally notices should be with the registrar about four weeks before your marriage but if either of you has been married before or are travelling from overseas, the notices should be with the Registrar at least six weeks beforehand.
Although you do not need to attend personally to hand in your marriage notices, at least one of you must attend personally at the Registrar's office during the seven day period leading up to the date of your marriage (not on the marriage day itself). In the case of a religious marriage, this is to collect the marriage schedule. In the case of a civil marriage, it is to finalise the marriage arrangements with the Registrar.
Documents to be Produced
If you are domiciled outside the United Kingdom, a 'certificate of no impediment to marriage' is required stating that you are free to marry. This should be obtained from your own registrar of marriages or a competent authority that has access to the marriage records in your country. Should any of your documents be in a foreign language, you will need to provide a certified translation in English. If you are unable to provide any of the required documents, the Registrar will advise you what other documents are acceptable.
Arranging your Marriage
Finally, you will need to arrange for two persons, aged 16 years or over, to be present at your ceremony to act as witnesses. Two witnesses are required for both religious and civil ceremonies. If you are unable to provide witnesses, you should ask the venue, where you will be getting married, if they are able to provide them.
The Marriage Schedule
If you are having a religious ceremony, the marriage schedule will be issued to you personally within seven days of the marriage date. It cannot be issued to anyone other than the prospective bride or bridegroom. Immediately after the ceremony, the marriage schedule will be signed by both parties and the person performing the marriage ceremony. The two witnesses will also add their signatures. The schedule must then be returned to the Registrar within three days so that the marriage can be registered. If you are having a civil ceremony, the schedule will not be issued but the Registrar will have it available for signing after the ceremony.
After your marriage has been registered, you can obtain a copy of the entry in the Registrar's book of marriages (your marriage certificate) from the Registrar on payment of the appropriate fee.
If You Live In England
After the 21 day period has elapsed from entering the notice in the notice book, the Superintendent Registrar will issue a certificate of marriage, which must be sent to the Scottish Registrar as quickly as possible.
If You Are Domiciled
Outside The UK
If you are in any doubt about what is required, contact the Registrar in the district in which you intend to marry. You are also strongly advised to fax over your documents for approval before making your journey to Scotland.
UK Visa Requirements
What it Costs to get
Married in Scotland
The fee payable for a religious marriage is not fixed and is decided by religious celebrant solemnising your marriage. You should expect, however, to pay up to GBP200.
Each extract of your marriage entry in the register of marriages (your marriage certificate) will cost GBP8. The minimum you can pay, therefore, is GBP72 (for a civil ceremony and including a marriage certificate).
Should you wish to use a
dressing or changing room at a register office, there may be an additional
charge e.g. Gretna's register office charges GBP20. You should check the
availability and cost with your register office if you require a changing