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Marriage schedule system

The Marriages, Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration Etc.) Act 2019 will modernise how marriages are registered for the first time since 1837, through implementation of a marriage schedule system and registration in an electronic register.

It will move away from the current paper register, creating a more secure system for keeping marriage records. This will be more efficient and easier to administer and amend, if necessary, in the future.

The electronic register will also allow for the names of parents of the couple (mother/father/parent/step-parent) to be included in the marriage entry and on marriage certificates, instead of only their fathers’ names as is currently the case.

It will be implemented from 4 May 2021.

What will change?

Ceremonies at the register office and approved marriage and civil partnership venues

Couples will no longer sign a marriage register or be given a marriage certificate during the ceremony, instead they will sign a marriage schedule.  This is a one-page document which contains the details of both people getting married which are needed to register a marriage.

Couples will have the option to include up to four parents in the schedule and subsequently their marriage certificate (mother, father, parent, step-parent).

Couples will not receive marriage certificates on the day of the marriage.  

The details of the marriage will be entered into the electronic register and a marriage certificate will be posted to the couple within seven days of the ceremony where this has been pre-paid.

You can order further certificates online.

Ceremonies at religious buildings (excluding Church of England)

Couples will no longer sign a marriage register or be given a marriage certificate during the ceremony, instead they will sign a marriage schedule.  This is a one-page document which contains the details of both people getting married which are needed to register a marriage.  The marriage schedule will be issued by the registration office in the district that the marriage will take place following legal preliminaries.

Couples will have the option to include up to four parents in the schedule and subsequently their marriage certificate (mother, father, parent, step-parent).

Couples will not receive marriage certificates on the day of the marriage.

The relevant person from the religious building or their representative will be expected to return the signed schedule to the register office in the district where the marriage took place within 21 days.

The details of the marriage will be entered onto the electronic marriage register within the following seven days when a certificate can be applied for.

Marriage certificates will be available from the registration service in the area where the marriage took place.

You can order a certificate online.

Church of England marriages

Couples will no longer sign a marriage register or be given a marriage certificate during the ceremony, instead they will sign a marriage document.  This is a one-page document which contains the details of both people getting married which are needed to register a marriage.  The marriage document will be issued by the minister at the church where the marriage is taking place.

The marriage document is a one page document which contains the details of both people getting married which are needed to register a marriage.

Couples will have the option to include up to four parents in the marriage document and subsequently their marriage certificate (mother, father, parent, step-parent).

Couples will not receive marriage certificates on the day of the marriage.

The minister or their representative will be expected to return the signed marriage document to the register office in the district where the marriage took place within 21 days.

The details of the marriage will be entered onto the electronic marriage register within the following seven days and only then can a marriage certificate be issued.

Marriage certificates will be available from Walsall Registration Service for marriages that took place within this district.  

You can order a certificate online.