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All You Need to Know About Court Marriage and its Legal Protection

All You Need to Know About Court Marriage and its Legal Protection

Court marriage is different from what you may have seen in your family or neighbor. This marriage takes place under the supervision of a marriage registrar under the administration of Special Marriage Act, 1954. In order to opt for court marriage, there is a long process through which the person has to go through. This type of marriage takes place in a court where one of the parties has stayed for a said period of 30 days at least.

A marriage registrar is required to be present along with three witnesses. Court marriage is not required to follow customary rituals. It can take place between two parties belonging to different caste, nationality, religion, etc.

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The court marriage procedure in India includes several steps, stages, and documentation.

How can we do court marriage?

In order to apply for court marriage in India, there are some conditions which are to be satisfied by both the parties as per the Special Marriage Act, 1964. These conditions are mentioned below:

  • The parties should not be married previously-Both the parties are required to be unmarried in order to enter court marriage. The parties shouldn’t have a living wife or husband. If any of the party is married previously and his or her spouse is alive, s/he cannot apply for court marriage in India. Also, if the party has taken a divorce, then the divorce papers are required to be produced before the marriage registrar. In case, the husband or wife is dead, the party is required to submit a death certificate.
  • Proper Consent of parties– The parties are required to give proper consent of the marriage in the soundness of mind. The parties are required to speak their mind and should clarify that they are doing court marriage on their own wish.
  • The party should be fit for procreation– It is mandatory that both the parties should be fit for procreation of children. If a party is found unfit, the application will be rejected.
  • Both the parties should have crossed required age– Both the parties are required to have crossed the marriage age. The age of female should not be less than 18 years and the age of the boy should not be less than 21 years.
  • Parties shouldn’t be in prohibited relation– As per the provision provided in Schedule I, both the parties are required not to be with the prohibited degree of relationship. It shall be only valid in one condition i.e. if a party belongs to a religion which allows it.

Which documents are required for court marriage in India?

According to the Special Marriage Act 1954, the following documents are needed to be submitted to marriage officer:

  1. Application form of court marriage signed by both the parties.
  2. Proof of date of birth of both the parties (birth certificate/passport/matriculation certificate).
  3. Proof of residence of both the parties.
    • Aadhar Card
    • Voter ID
    • Bills (Electricity Bill)
    • Ration Card
    • PAN Card
  4. Proof of marital status (divorcee, widower or unmarried)
  5. An affidavit mentioning that the parties have no relation with each other as per the degree of prohibited relationship according to the condition specified by the Special Marriage Act 1954.
  6. Both the parties should have crossed required age– Both the parties are required to have crossed the marriage age. The age of female should not be less than 18 years and the age of the boy should not be less than 21 years.
  7. Parties shouldn’t be in prohibited relation– As per the provision provided in Schedule I, both the parties are required not to be with the prohibited degree of relationship. It shall be only valid in one condition i.e. if a party belongs to a religion which allows it.

Both the parties have to get these documents signed by a Gazetted officer.

What is the Court marriage procedure in India?

  1. Intended marriage application
    The process of court marriage in India is a lengthy process. There are several steps which are involved in the process of court marriage in India. Let us discuss the process one by one. At first, the marriage officer is required to be informed about the marriage intention by the parties. The parties are required to give a notice in writing to the marriage officer. This marriage intention notice is given to the marriage officer of the district in which one of the parties is required to have lived for a time period of 30 days before the date of serving the marriage notice. This means, if both parties are living in Amritsar and want to court marriage in Chandigarh, then one of the parties is required to have spent at least 30 days in Chandigarh before the day of the marriage notice. The party is required to live in Chandigarh till the day of court marriage.
  1. Marriage Notice Publication
    Once the marriage officer approves the marriage notice as per the Special Marriage Act, 1954, he has to publish the notice in public.
    The notice is published at a place where it can be clearly read by the people in the office and one more copy is published in the district office of the other party’s residence place.
  2. Objections to Court Marriage
    The marriage objection can be raised to the marriage officer of the district where the notice is published.
    The motive of publishing court marriage notice is to invite objections from the public. Anyone can put objections on the court marriage. The objection is raised as per the conditions mentioned in Section 4 of the Special Marriage Act, Chapter II.
    If the objection raised doesn’t satisfy the conditions mentioned, the objection will be rejected. Though, the marriage officer has to investigate the objection in many cases.
    The marriage will not be solemnized in case the objections which are raised over the court marriage are found true. For this, the marriage officer has 30 days to investigate the objection.
    The parties can file an appeal in case the marriage officer finds out that the objections raised over court marriage are valid. The party then has to file an appeal in the district court. This appeal can be filed within a time limit of 30 days from the disapproval of court marriage.
  3. Signing Court Marriage Declaration
    If there is no objection raised on the court marriage, then both parties are required to sign a marriage declaration in the marriage officer’s presence. Along with both the parties, three witnesses too have to sign the declaration. The marriage officer will then countersign the declaration.

Format of Declaration (By Bridegroom)
I, name here, hereby declare as follows:

  1. I am, at the present time…………….. (Unmarried, widower or divorcee, as the case may be).
  2. I have completed …………… years of age.
  3. I am not related to ……the bride, within the degrees of prohibited relationship.
  4. I am aware that if any statement in this declaration is false and if in making such a statement I either know or believe it to be false or do not believe it to be true, I am liable to imprisonment and also to a fine.

Sign
__________

Format of Declaration (By Bride)
I, name here, hereby declare as follows:

  1. I am, at present time…………………. (unmarried, widower or divorcee, as the case, may be)
  2. I have completed …………years of age.
  3. I am not related to ……………… the bridegroom, within the degrees of prohibited relationship.
  4. I am aware that if any statement in this declaration is false and if in making such a statement I either know or believe it to be false or do not believe it to be true, I am liable to imprisonment and also to a fine.

Sign
_____________

    • Signed in our presence by the above named (groom name & bride name). So far as we are aware, there is no lawful impediment to the marriage.
    • (Sign of Witness 1)
    • (Sign of Witness 2)
    • (Sign of Witness 3)
    • (Countersign of Marriage Officer)
    • Date: The ……Day of …..20….
  1. Court Marriage Place
    Court marriage can take place within the office of the marriage officer. The marriage can also take place at a considerable distance around the marriage office. Both the parties are required to speak out following in the presence of a marriage officer:
    “I (name) take thee (name) to be my lawful wife/husband.
  2. Court Marriage Certificate
    Once all the above steps are carried forward successfully, the marriage officer then has to enter a marriage certificate in the marriage certificate book. This process is mentioned in Schedule IV of Special Marriage Act, 1954.

Format of Court Marriage Certificate- 
I, Marriage Officer, here certify that on the ….. Day of …..20…… groom and bride appeared before me and that each of them, in my presence and in the presence of three witnesses who have signed hereunder, made the declarations required by Section 11 and that a marriage under this Act was solemnized between them in my presence.
(Sign)
Marriage Officer for …….. District
(Sign of Groom)
(Sign of Bride)

Court marriage in India takes place through the steps mentioned above.

What is the age of court marriage in India?
As per Indian constitution, for court marriage in India, the boy is required to have crossed 21 years whereas the girl is required to be of 18 years or above.

Why is court marriage important?
Speaking about the importance of court marriage, it is a personal choice. It has many benefits over the traditional form of marriage. Court marriage is an economical way of getting married as compared to traditional marriage in India.
It saves you a lot of money which can be used in the future for any purpose. Court marriage saves your time as well whereas; you need to spend a lot of time in traditional marriage.
Court marriage is an option in case the bride and groom want to get married but they don’t get marriage permission from their family. Indian constitution allows marriage if the girl is 18 and the boy is 21 (referring to the conditions mentioned above).
The parties have the choice of getting the marriage solemnized in their own wish. For example, if both parties are Hindu, they can opt for Christian style marriage.
Also, since court marriage is performed in the presence of a marriage officer who has to perform required documentation, so the couple is not required to reapply for marriage registration as it is a part of court marriage itself.
The marriage certificate received from marriage officer is a valid proof of the marriage. There is no need of any other proof to be produced to anyone.

Can court marriage be done anywhere in India?
One can do court marriage in any place/city of India. There is only one condition. As per the Special Marriage Act 1954, one of the parties is required to have spent at least 30 days in that area where he wants to do court marriage.

Can I apply for court marriage online?
No, you can not apply for court marriage online in India. You are required to be present physically before a marriage officer physically in the court.

Am I required to take permission/approval from my family for court marriage?
There is no need to take permission from the parents for court marriage. You can simply apply for court marriage.

Is a lawyer required for court marriage in India?
The above-mentioned processes of court marriage can be daunting and frustrating at times. So many times, it has been observed that both parties are not allowed to do court marriage due to so many reasons which again creates a problem for them.
No matter if you are applying for court marriage in Punjab or in any other part of the country, it is highly recommended that you should have an expert lawyer who will not only take care of all the consequences but will also deal with the problem with complete safety.
You need a lawyer who has years of experience in handling any legal situation which may arise during the process of court marriage. Your lawyer will also guide you and tell you how to submit documents and other paperwork so that everything can be done in just one time only.
If you are thinking about how to do court marriage in one day; this is where we come in the picture.

AdvocateinChandigarh (AIC) has been helping the parties making their court marriages trouble free and comfortable for over a decade. Our exceptional track record of dealing with court marriage situations has enabled us to serve our clients with the perfect solution.
We have a team of experienced lawyers. Not only we can help you with marriage registration in Chandigarh but we can also help you with court marriage in one day. We believe in giving a realistic solution to every problem which is long lasting.
We understand that you have taken a great step in doing court marriage and you may have to go through several hardships. Since the situation may invite many complications; we are here to handle it for you. Our motive is to provide you complete peace of mind. Contact us today at 9914328749 and enjoy a happily married life. You can even mail us at advhighcourt14@gmail.com.

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