Can I Legally get Married in India?
From Goa to Mumbai, there’s an abundance of destinations in India for your wedding. Some popular venues are the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel and the ITC Maurya. If you or your partner are not Indian citizens it is quite an arduous process to marry in India. Generally, it would be far easier to marry in the UK, and then celebrate a non-legal blessing in India. However, if you are completely set on marrying in India, this is what you need to do:
- Firstly, you have to be aware that there are 3 different types of marriage licence: Hindu, Christian, and Special (for mixed-faith marriages).
- For all of these marriages, you have to have been a resident in India for 30 days prior to the wedding. In order for a Hindu marriage to take place, both you and your partner have to be Hindu. If you would like to have a Christian marriage, you both have to be Christian also.
- In order to marry in India, you will need to acquire a Certificate of No Impediment (CNI) from the UK. This is a legal document that basically states that it is legal for you and your partner to wed. You will have to apply for this document at the British embassy or consulate in India. This CNI will then have to be legalised by a British Foreign & Commonwealth Office.
- If you are planning a Christian marriage, it is essential that you write to the relevant Priest or minister informing him that you intend to marry. Likewise, you will also need to submit 2 passport size images of both you and your partner in your application form, as well as all the documents listed below.
- You must allow at least a month for the Priest to put the marriage notice in the registrar’s office before the wedding ceremony can take place. Your marriage will also be published in the local newspaper.
- Once 60 days have passed, you can then legally marry, assuming all of the paperwork is in order. Good luck!
- Passport sized photos
- Birth certificate
- Copy of the 2 witnesses’ passports
- Police certificate stating that you have lived in the local area (in India) for the last 30 days
- Affidavit stating that you can legally marry
- Divorce certificate (if necessary from previous marriage)
- Death certificate (if you have been widowed)
In 2018 were homosexual relationships decriminalised, however, it is not possible for same-sex couples to legally get married in India.
This information is appropriate for UK nationals getting married overseas. We always advise that you contact the relevant embassy for information before booking any trips. This information is up to date to the best of our knowledge.