Getting Married in Canada

Are you planning to get married in Ontario? Congratulations! There are some government documents you need if you plan to marry in Ontario, such as a marriage license, a marriage certificate, and a just married application for changing your last name. You need to be at least 16 years old to get married legally in Canada and if you are below 18 you need the consent of both parents in writing.

Step 1: Forms to fill out before you marry

Before you get married, there are certain forms you need to fill out. This is either a marriage license, or a church publication and announcement known as the ‘the publication of banns. If either you or your spouse were married before, Banns cannot be published in that case you’ll need to get a marriage license.

You and your spouse, witnesses and the person who performed the ceremony will all sign the license or banns immediately after the marriage ceremony.

Step 2: Get a marriage license

Getting a marriage license requires 2 government-issued IDs per person getting married, one of which must include a photo. You may download a marriage license application form online. Acceptable IDs include:

  • Canadian Citizenship Card
  • Valid Passport
  • Valid Driver’s License
  • Birth Certificate (or change of name certificates)
  • Record of immigrant landing
  • Valid Ontario Photo Card

The validity of a marriage license is 3 months from the date of issue.

Step 3: Get a marriage certificate

Before you can get a marriage certificate, you need to register your marriage in Canada. The official who conducted your marriage you will do this by sending a complete and signed marriage license to us for notarization.

This important document provides a legal record of your marriage, listing the date, place and names of the people who were married. It is not only legal proof that you are married, but also allows you to:

  • Get certain social benefits
  • Settle an estate
  • Change your last name

Step 4: Change last name after marriage

When you marry, legally you need not change your last name (surname). But if you want to change your last name, you may use our help.

Special Cases:

1. Remarry after a divorce

If you are about to remarry after a divorce, you will need to carry your official divorce documents (below), in original, or court-certified copies.

  • the final decree
  • the final judgment
  • a certificate of divorce

2. Out-of-country divorces

If you were divorced outside of Canada, you need to show proof that you’re no longer married and these documents need to be verified by the government. This process can take up to four weeks. You will need to provide the following documents:

  • Marriage license application form that is completed and signed.
  • Statement of sole responsibility for each divorcee signed by both people who are planning to get married and a witness.
  • Legal opinion letter giving reasons why the divorce or annulment should be recognized in Ontario.
  • Divorce decree or annulment in original or court-certified copy in English or French.

If you are getting married in Ontario, or plan on having a marriage abroad, Notarizers can assist you with your documents. For more information, please call 416-782-5926 or Toll Free: 1-888-672-7266