An unabridged marriage certificate is a certificate given in South Africa which serves as legal proof that you have a valid marriage. An unabridged certificate is the full marriage certificate which is issued by home affairs. It is essential if you need to travel abroad or if you have to apply for a foreign passport. An abridged certificate is a shorter version that just states your name, ID number and the place and date of the marriage. This article answers some of the most frequently asked questions regarding the marriage certificate application process.
Where Can I Apply?
You will need to apply at your local home affairs office. If you live abroad then you can also apply for your unabridged marriage certificate at your nearest South African Mission or Consulate.
You will need to bring with you your Identity certificate along with a handwritten certificate from the marriage officer. If your husband or wife has passed away then you will also need to bring the death certificate with you. It is now also possible to verify your marriage certificate online.
If you didn’t get married at a home affairs office then you will need the original priest who was at the ceremony to submit the marriage register at your nearest home affairs office. This is the only way you will be able to have your marriage particulars to be legally recorded on the National Population Register (NPR).
How Long Will it Take?
The unabridged marriage certificate can take between 6 and 8 weeks, whereas the abridged marriage certificate can be received on the same day as the application.
How Much Does it Cost?
The abridged and unabridged certificates cost different amounts. You should check with your local home Affairs Office to see how much it is going to cost you at the time of your application.
You can find the forms that you will need to complete at your nearest Home Affairs Office. There are also online versions available.
More information on the application process can be found on the South African government website.
Having trouble obtaining a copy of an unabridged marriage certificate? For issues such as the lack of an unabridged birth certificate turn to the team at passportassist.co.za for assistance.