Marriage is a momentous occasion, and due to its significance there are certain rules you must adhere to if getting married in Ireland. Even for those living here but marrying overseas, the regulations remain important - ensuring that this significant step can be taken without hassle or worry.
Aside from the rules about how and where you can marry, marriage will immediately affect lots of areas of your life. Your legal status, your inheritance rights, and pensions are just some things that will change.
Requirements for marriage
In Ireland, everyone can settle down and marry their partner in the traditional sense - regardless of whether they are same- or opposite-sex couples! Anyone wishing to do so should be at least 18 years old with a full understanding and consent. People who are ordinarily resident in Ireland but want to wed abroad must also meet these requirements for matrimony.
Notification requirements for marriage
Begin planning your happily ever after by notifying the Registrar at least three months prior to tying the knot - whether you’re an Irish native or a destination wedding! Make sure this special day in Ireland is one for both of you will never forget.
You must make this notification in person to any Registrar. When you meet the Registrar, you will sign a declaration stating that you do not know of any legal reason why the marriage cannot happen. If everything is in order, the registrar gives you a marriage registration form (MRF). The MRF gives you authorisation or permission to get married. You give it to the person who will be solemnising your marriage.
Find out how to notify the Registrar that you will be getting married in Ireland.
The requirement to give 3-months' notice does not apply to civil partners whose civil partnership was registered in Ireland. If civil partners choose to marry, their civil partnership is automatically dissolved
Postponing your wedding
You have the luxury of extra time! If you've given your three-month notice, but had to delay tying the knot due to extenuating circumstances, then don't worry - your Marriage Registration Form will still be valid for six months after its original wedding date.
Need to adjust your wedding plans due to the pandemic? We've got you covered! If your new date falls within this 6-month window, there's still time for a change of heart. Reach out your local civil registry service—where you first declared intent—to amend that marriage registration form.
When planning a postponed wedding, it is important to contact the place of notice at least three months in advance of your new date. After doing so, you must meet with the Registrar once more for an updated MRF; this service does not require any additional cost.
Getting married abroad
If you are an Irish citizen and are planning to marry abroad, the legal validity of your marriage is governed, in part, by the laws of the country in which you marry. In most, if not all cases, the legal formalities abroad are very different to those in Ireland .
Changes to your legal status following marriage
Getting married affects many areas of your life in Ireland. These range from life insurance and pensions, to inheritance.