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Vital Statistics

Marriage Licence

Who Needs This Licence?
Anyone who wants to be married in Nova Scotia.
Issuing Department / Agency:
Vital Statistics Office
Service Nova Scotia
Where can you get this Licence and / or further information?
Contact a Deputy Issuer of Marriage Licences properly authorized by the Government of Nova Scotia.
Application Process:
  1. One or both parties to the marriage must apply in person to a Deputy Issuer of Marriage Licences in their community (find a location near you).

  2. Only one member of the couple needs to apply for the license, but you will be asked to provide a signed piece of identification and proof of age for both parties to the intended marriage. Documents must be either originals or certified copies and must include the following information:
    • Full name, including given names
    • Age
    • Current address
    • Proof of marital status is required if either party is widowed or divorced; see "Who Can Get Married?" for further information

  3. Need of parental consent to get a Marriage Licence:
    • If you are 19 or over, you do not need parental consent.
    • If you are 16, 17, or 18, you need the written consent of your parent(s) or guardian(s).  Your local Deputy Issuer of Marriage Licences has the required consent forms.
    • If you are under 16, a Marriage Licence cannot be issued.

  4. If one or both of the intended parties was divorced, proof of divorce must be provided.  Appropriate documentation, such as consents and divorce decrees (note: originals are needed, decree absolute or certificate of divorce only), are required along with the affidavit.

  5. If one or both of the intended parties is widowed, proof of death must be provided.

  6. The applicant must pay for it at that time.
Waiting Period:
Provided that all the items that must accompany the application have been received
(Please allow several extra days for mail delivery.)
Expiry :
This licence is valid for 1 year from date of issuance.
Price: (No tax is charged)
Related Requirements:
Necessary support documentation
Additional Information:
  1. You do not have to be a Nova Scotia resident in order to be married here, but the licence is only valid in this Province.
  2. After the marriage has been completed, it will have to be properly registered; see Marriage: Registration by the person (minister, judge, etc.) who solemnizes the marriage.
  3. Blood tests are not required under Nova Scotia legislation.
  4. In Nova Scotia, couples can choose a religious or civil ceremony. Either type of ceremony must be witnessed by two people who are at least 16 years of age.
  5. Religious ceremonies are performed by a religious representative of your choice, as long as they are registered with Nova Scotia Vital Statistics under the Solemnization of Marriage Act.
  6. Civil ceremonies are performed by a Justice of the Peace or Judge. Contact the Deputy Issuer of Marriage Licences to obtain a list of Justices of the Peace authorized to perform marriages. You can also get this list of Justices of the Peace from the Department of Justice website .
  7. The religious representative or Justice of the Peace or Judge who performs the ceremony will also help to complete the necessary Marriage Registration Form.
  8. This form is then sent within 48 hours of the marriage ceremony by the religious representative or Justice of the Peace or Judge to the Deputy Issuer who returns it to the Vital Statistics office, where the marriage is registered and a legal record is kept.
  9. At the time of the ceremony, your religious representative or Justice of the Peace or Judge will provide you with a certificate of marriage - this interim document can be used temporarily to prove that you are married.
  10. After the marriage, and following the receipt and registration of the Marriage Registration Form, a permanent Marriage Certificate may be applied for through the office of Vital Statistics.
Legislative Authority:
Solemnization of Marriage Act, Revised Statutes of Nova Scotia, 1989, Chapter 436

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