Requirements for a Legal Marriage in Ireland

Requirements for a Legal Marriage in Ireland

Legal Marriage in Ireland

There are two categories of legal marriages in Ireland. The first category is a civil ceremony held by a registrar, and the second category is a religious or secular ceremony held by a minister, priest or other person approved to marry people under the Marriages Act 2015.

The second legal wedding category is the one that the OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation is registered as a nominating body in Ireland.

It’s important for you to be aware of that fact because that’s the organisation with whom I’m affiliated and registered as a solemniser.

As a graduate of the OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation, I’m part of the OneSpirit minister community, the ground from which I go out to minister in service to others, and to which I return for support and sanctuary.

In addition, OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation also offers the opportunity to join a professional register, Register of OneSpirit Interfaith Ministers(ROSIM).

If a minister wants to be on the OneSpirit register of solemnisers, they must be members of ROSIM. In other words, it’s a requirement to join that professional register if I want to be registered by OneSpirit as a solemniser. This is necessary for the OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation, because as a nominating body for solemnisers, the organisation need to ensure that ministers are adhering to best practice, and also that ministers are not solemnising marriage as a business for profit or gain.

Points that may be helpful for you to know…


All couples must have a meeting arranged with a registrar at least three months in advance of the date that they want to get married. It’s advisable not to leave this until the last moment, try to give as much notification as you possibly can.

When meeting the registrar, you will need the following documentation:

  • Photo ID (Drivers Licence or Passport)
  • If one or both people are divorced, you will need original divorce decrees
  • If one or both people are widowed/widower, you will need the death certificate
  • You will also need the name and address of the person that you want to solemnise your wedding
  • Names and dates of birth for both witnesses (your witness must be 18 years of age – if they’re younger looking, it may be necessary to verify their date of birth)
  • You’ll need to be clear as to whether you want a civil, religious or secular ceremony
  • You’ll need your PPS numbers. All marriages, civil, religious or secular, must take place at venues that are open to the public. There are additional fees for civil marriages at venues other than Registry Offices.

The registrar will advise the couple what fees are due when they are giving formal notification of their intent to marry.

The registrar will issue a marriage registration form (MRF) also known as the green booklet. This is your civil licence to marry. It is an important document and a marriage cannot be civilly registered without it – so take good care of it!

The MRF should be given to the person marrying you (OneSpirit minister) prior to the ceremony.

After your wedding, the MRF should be returned to the registrar (any registrar) within a month of your wedding ceremony. This is to ensure that your marriage is civilly registered.

Please remember that returning the MRF to the registrar is your responsibility, and not the person marrying you.

Good luck on your precious journey towards marriage!

Rev Caroline Lennon

Certified Civil Celebrant and Interfaith Minister based in Ireland. As a non-denominational Minister, there are no limitations to the personal ceremony that can be created exactly as you wish.

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