Requirements for Obtaining a Marriage Licence in Barbados
GETTING MARRIED IN BARBADOS
Application for a marraige licence must be made by BOTH (male and female) persons at the office of the Ministry of Home Affairs. The marriage licence is valid for three (3) months. Therefore, couples can get married within three (3) months only, from the time they received their marriage licences.
All couples are advised to peruse the information contained in this document and to make certain that they satisfy all the requirements for getting married in Barbados prior to making the actual application for a marriage licence.
Documents required for obtaining a Marriage License:
* Nationals must submit their valid birth certificates, national identification cards and passports (if available). All non-nationals must present their valid passports and valid birth certifcates;
In the case of a widoe or widower, the original death certificate and original marriage certificate must be submitted;
If either party was divorced, an original Decree Absolute or Final Judgement or a certified copy of either document by a Notary Public* must be presented. The Decree Nisi is not acceptable; and
*A signed letter from the Marriage Officer or official note from the Magistrate that states his/her intention to perform the wedding ceremony must be presented when applying for the marriage licence.
* A Notary Public is a person authorized to perform certain legal formalities, especially to draw up or certify contracts, deeds, and other documents for use in other jurisdictions.
Persons who have been granted Barbadian citizenship either by descent or registration, immigration status or permanent residence, are required to produce the original documents issued by the Immigration Department of Barbados or passports in which the relevant information has been stamped.
Non-nationals who have been granted work permits must produce the passport showing that a work permit was issued to them, or the relevant document issued by the Immigration Department. The application form or receipt will not be accepted.
Please note that a work permit does not confer permanent status and should b valid at the time of application.
Note also that a maariage licence will not be issued for a date which is beyond the expiry date of any visitor's stay in Barbados.
N.B. All documents (except passports and identification cards) not in English must be accompanied by an English translation that is certified by an authorized Notary Public (NOT a Justice of the Peace). However, if the names which appear on the birth certificate are the same as those on the passport, then the document will be accepted.
MARRIAGE OF MINORS
Persons under the age of sixteen (16) years cannot be legally married in Barbados. Regarding consent required for marriage of a minor between sixteen (16) and eighteen (18) years, the following stipulations should be noted:-
- If the parents are living together, either parent can give consent;
- If the parents are divorced or living apart, the parent having legal or actual custody, or where legal custody is given to each parent for part of the year, either parent can give consent;
- If both parents have been deprived of custody by order of a court, the person to whose custody the minor is committed by order of the court can give consent;
- Where one parent is dead and no other guardian exists, the surviving parent can give consent;
- If a guardian has been appointed by the deceased parent, the surviving parent or the appointed guardian can give consent for marriage of a minor; and
- Where both parents are dead or are non compos mentis (mentally incapable of managing there affairs/unsound mind) a lawfully appointed guardian or acknowledged guardian who has raised up the minor or who for at least three years immediately preceding the intended marriage has supported the minor can give consent for marriage of minor.
If none of the foregoing options are possible, a Judge in Barbados, on application being made to him, may exercise his discretion to dispense with consent.
Persons eighteen (18) years of age and older do not require parental consent.
- NON-NATIONALS - Bds $200.00 cash and a $25.00 stamp (this does not apply to persons who have residence or citizenship in Barbados).
- NATIONALS - Bds $45.00 cash and a $10.00 stamp (This applies if either party is a citizen or resident of Barbados).
The $10.00 and $25.00 stamps are supplied by this Ministry at the time of application.
Arrangements should be made with a Marriage Officer (a Minister of Religion or a Magristrate who is authorized to perform wedding ceremonies in Barbados) prior to applying for a Marriage Licence. As was previously mentioned under 'Requirements' the couple must submit correspondence from the Marriage Officer who has consented to perform the wedding ceremony. One of the ways in which persons from abroad can obtain the services of a Marriage Officer resident on this island (a Minister of Religion) is to call the number of any of the churches operating in Barbados or the Supreme Court ( for a Magistrate). Please see contact information related to acquiring the services of a Magistrate, below.
This Ministry is not authorized to arrange or execute weddings. However, many hotels in Barbados have their own Wedding Planners/Co-ordinators. It is therefore advisable to contact the hotel (if staying at one) to obtain the services of its Wedding Planner/Co-ordinator. If staying elsewhere, please contact the Barbados -Tourism Product Authority at (246) 467-3600, (246) 428-5570 or (246) 426-1718, for the relevant assistance.
A non-resident Minister of Religion (who must also be a registered Marriage Officer), who is requested to solemnize a marriage in Barbados, may, after satisfactorily fulfilling the neccessary criteria be appointed as a temporary Marriage Officer of Barbados. Information outlining this procedure can be obtained by contacting the Ministry of Home Affairs. A marriage may be solemnized shortly after the issue of the licence.
MINISTRY OF HOME AFFAIRS OFFICE HOURS
Applications for marriage licences must be made between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Mondays to Fridays. The offices are closed on weekends and public holidays.
All persons conducting business in the Marriage Licensing Office of the Ministry of Home Affairs should be approoiately attired. Therefore, your co-operation in complying with the below dress code is appreciated.
- No simwear/beachwear
- No tight/revealing clothing
- No backless or strapless clothing
- No shorts
- No exposed underwear (including boxer shorts)
- No hair curlers
- No flip flops
- No bare feet (rubber slippers)
- No shades or sunglasses
A copy of the marriage certificate can be obtained from the Registration Department. The address is:
REGISTRATION DEPARTMENT OFFICE HOURS
Office hour Mondays to Fridays 8:30 a.m. - 3:45 p.m.
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