There are three ways one can get married in Nigeria.
1, Traditional Wedding
3, White wedding
If you are about getting married and wonder what next when it comes to satisfying the law of the land. Then this article is for you to be rightly informed about the Registry process in Nigeria.
Wedding registry can be conducted in any of the 57 Local government council / Local council development area. You just need to know which one is closest to you to start the wedding process.
Wedding Registry Process
You are required to provide these on arrival
1, 2 Passport Photograph each from the couple. #
2, Photocopy of Birth Certificates or Age declaration..
3, Registration fee of N10, 500* inclusive of swearing in
*fee is dependent on the local council for Onigbongbo local council you will pay- N7,500 for registration/ N3000 for swearing in. One can also make part payment with full balance due before the wedding
# If partner is a foreigner then photocopy of international passport showing the data page and the visa page is required in addition to all these.
You’ll be asked to fill the registration form after which you are entitled to observe the 21days notice before your wedding is conducted.
If you have to get married before the 21 days notice of observance, a special license is required which is issued at the state office, Alausa . A staff in the registry office usually takes the responsibility to acquire the license on behalf of the couple. Payments for special license is usually about N20,000 and this is exclusive of the payment for the registration fee. Hence, if you are looking to get married before the 21days notice elapses then you should be looking at paying N30,000* ( license and registration fee)
After the 21 working days notice, couples are expected to come back to the registry office in any Tuesday after the expiration of the notice. Tuesday is swearing in day.
This process involves you (couple) filling three forms
A, The Affidavit form- This is to indicate that you are more than 21years, never been married e.t.c if you are divorced then the divorce letter needs to be presented.
B, Prohibited Degree Form- This form shows the list of people you are legally allowed to marry or not to marry.
C, Information Slip- This short slip requires you to provide information that would later be transferred to the wedding certificate e.g Groom’s Fathers name, Bride’s Fathers name, name of witness.
You will then take an oath with the Bible or Koran depending on your beliefs to declare the accuracy of the information provided.
After the swearing in or taking of oath, the couple is then ready to get married in the next two days. Marriage registry is normally conducted mostly on Thursdays and then Saturdays for couples with special license( same with all councils). A couple does not necessarily need to get married in the next 2 days but any other Thursday as long as it is within the window of Three months after which the registration expires.
During the swearing in, you do not need a witness, just the couple is expected.
On this day ( any Thursday) the couple is expected to arrive at the registry office promptly. Dress code is not strict. You can wish to come with your wedding dress or a formal dress. This ceremony is usually conducted in the presence of family and friends. The couple gets to sign the Three important copies of the Marriage certificate. This is signed by the couple and then the witness. One is kept in the registry office, one taken to the state office Alausa and one is given to the couple for their keeps.
If a church wedding is preferred, then the couple is issued a license with their own code number on it. That license is presented to the church and they will create the marriage certificate based on the code number. Your code number validates the certificate.
Two MAJOR mistakes made by most couples
1, Ikoyi Registry is the best- No its not. It issues you the same marriage certificate that any other local government could issue. It is well established, popular and hence expensive.
2, We want the church blessings: Thats okay but If your church or religious organization is not registered, then any marriage certificate issued by the same body is deemed illegal by the state hence you would not be protected by the law of the land concerning married couple. The Home office, likely will not recognize the certificate either. Although, you could still attend the church for blessings, your signing in this case should be done at the registry.
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