United Kingdom Outline

UK Marriage Laws

Congratulations! If you've found yourself at this page it is likely that you are either planning to be married or have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in the United Kingdom. The information provided below will walk you through the steps one must follow to become a minister and perform a valid wedding ceremony in the United Kingdom.

1 How to Become an Ordained Minister in United Kingdom

If you haven't already, you should get ordained online with the Universal Life Church. Ordination is free and can be completed in just a matter of minutes. Thousands of legally valid marriages are performed by ULC ministers around the world every year. Begin the process by clicking the big blue button below!

2 How to Officiate a Marriage in United Kingdom

Next, you should contact the office of your local marriage authority. Let them know that you are a minister who was ordained online with the Universal Life Church, and ask what they will require of you to officiate a legal marriage.

3 License to Marry in United Kingdom

After you've contacted your marriage authority, you should visit our online store to purchase whatever documentation will be required. We typically advise ministers in United Kingdom to get an Ordination Package. Please note that the Universal LIfe Church offers an international FedEx shipping option that will allow you to receive your ministerial products anywhere in United Kingdom. Additionally, please attempt to leave at least 1 month between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials well in-advance of the big day.

4 How to Perform a Wedding in United Kingdom

Now that you've done all of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! While several ministers of the Universal Life Church have registered and acted as wedding celebrants in the United Kingdom, the Universal LIfe Church's legal standing there is not as firm as it is in the United States and elsewhere.We are actively seeking stronger recognition, however, and would appreciate you contacting us if you think you could be of service in this regard. At the Universal Life Church we receive several calls from wedding officiants in the United Kingdom, after they've received their license to marry by getting ordained online, asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony. Once the legal matters have been taken care of, officiating a wedding (while a sometimes-daunting task) can be a great deal of fun. We would suggest that new U.K. wedding ministers concerned about the ceremony peruse one of our helpful wedding guides. The minister training org section of our website should offer a helpful refresher for more experienced ministers.

United Kingdom Flag

United Kingdom Marriage Code

Marriage laws in the United Kingdom are quite strict and while they vary slightly in Northern Ireland and Scotland are largely the same throughout the country. First off, local governments in the United Kingdom tend to employ professional marriage registrants. If you want a religious ceremony, you will need to seek one out who is registered as a religious marriage celebrant. As noted, the Universal Life Church is not currently a recognized religious denomination in the United Kingdom, as such, but it is on the horizon. Be aware that Same-Sex marriage is legal in the U.K. with the exception of Northern Ireland. Also note that some churches, like the Anglican Church, will not celebrate same-sex marriages.
6. Religious ceremonies
A religious wedding can take place at a church, chapel or other registered religious building.

Religious blessing can take place after a civil ceremony in a register office.

You can't get married in an Anglican Church as a same sex couple. You can get married in other religious buildings if:

the religious organisation allows the marriage of same sex couples to take place
the premises has been registered for the marriage of same sex couples

View the United Kingdom Statutes on the official state site
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