Legal Requirements For Getting Married In Ireland

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To help you get started with the state requirements to get married in Ireland, we've visited Citizen Information to get the necessery information.
Getting married is a big decision and is one of the most significant events in someone's life. Aside from the excitement involved in planning your big day, there are rules and procedures you must follow in order to marry in Ireland.
Aside from the rules about how and where you can marry, marriage will immediately affect lots of areas of your life. You may not be aware but your legal status, your inheritance rights, and pensions are just some things that will change. Many other areas of life will also change and we examine these and other issues in this document.

To contract a legally valid marriage in Ireland the parties to the marriage must:

  • have the capacity to marry each other
  • freely consent to the marriage. Free consent may be absent if, at the time of the marriage, a person is suffering from intoxication, brain damage, mental disability, mental instability or insanity to the extent that he/she is not able to understand the implications of marriage. Additionally, if someone agrees to marry because of threats or intimidation, his/her apparent consent may also be invalid and the marriage may be void.
  • observe the necessary formalities

 

Capacity to marry

To be legally entitled to marry, both of you must fulfil all of the following requirements at the time the marriage takes place. Both parties must:

  • Be over 18 years of age or have a Court Exemption Order if this is not the case.
  • Have given the Registrar three months notification of the marriage (or have a Court Exemption Order if this is not the case) and have been issued by the Registrar with a Marriage Registration Form.
  • Be either single, widowed, divorced, a former civil partner of a civil partnership that ended through death or dissolution, or have had a civil annulment of a marriage or civil partnership or a valid foreign divorce or dissolution.
  • Be of opposite sexes – for legal purposes, a person's gender is deemed to be the one he/she had at birth, even if he/she subsequently had medical procedures to alter his/her gender.
  • Have the mental capacity to understand the nature of marriage
  • Not be related by blood or marriage to a degree that prohibits you in law from marrying each other. If you are related to your proposed spouse by blood or by marriage, you should contact a solicitor to ensure that you do not fall within the prohibited degree of relationship. 

If either party doesn't fulfil even one of the above requirements, any subsequent marriage ceremony is legally void.