Guides

How to Get Married Online in Singapore (Step-by-Step Guide)

July 3, 2024
8 min

Getting married online in Singapore has become increasingly popular, offering couples a convenient and efficient way to tie the knot. With the advancement of digital services, the Singapore government has streamlined the marriage process, making it accessible and straightforward for residents. This growing trend reflects the modern need for flexible solutions that fit into busy lifestyles, allowing couples to handle most of the paperwork and formalities from the comfort of their homes.

marina bay sands sunset in singapore

The Legality of Online Marriages in Singapore

Before the global pandemic, many countries had strict rules requiring the physical presence of both the couple and the officiant for a marriage to be valid. Additionally, couples often had to visit the county clerk's office in person to obtain a marriage license.

However, in 2019, Utah County transformed this process by introducing a fully digital marriage license application system. This innovation removed the need for physical visits, making the process more efficient. Utah's online marriage system is especially noteworthy for its inclusivity, allowing people from anywhere in the world to get married online.

Getting married through the Singaporean government requires both parties to be physically present. The process usually involves submitting a marriage application online, attending a verification appointment, and having a solemnization ceremony in person. While online submission of documents and scheduling is possible, the actual ceremony still mandates physical presence.

Courtly connects couples with authorized officiants in Utah, allowing them to complete all necessary steps remotely, without the need for any in-person appointments. This digital convenience ensures that couples can efficiently navigate the entire marriage process online, making it more efficient and less stressful.

Traditional Marriage Process in Singapore

In Singapore, the process for a traditional marriage involves several key steps to ensure legal compliance and smooth solemnization.

1. Choose a Date, Time, and Venue for Your Solemnization

  • Pick a suitable date and time for your wedding ceremony. The venue can be anywhere in Singapore. 
  • Your solemnization must occur at least 21 days after you submit your marriage application. This 21-day notice period allows time for any objections to be raised.
  • Note that your marriage application is valid for 6 months. After this period, you'll need to submit a new application.

2. Choose Two Witnesses

  • Select two witnesses aged 21 or older. They can be of any nationality.
  • Witnesses must provide their personal information and a copy of their identification for the marriage application. They must also be present at the ceremony with their original identification.

3. Prepare Your Marriage Application

  • Collect all necessary documents, such as identification documents for the bride, groom, and witnesses.
  • Ensure you have a Singpass account to start the application online. You will also need a credit card for online payment or NETS for kiosk payment.
  • Check for any additional documents required based on your specific situation.
  • Submit your application online, at an onsite kiosk at the Registry of Marriages (ROM), or Citizen Connect Centres (CCC).
  • Add noreply@marriage.gov.sg to your email address book to receive status updates.

4. Book a solemnizer

  • Choose and book a solemnizer through the online marriage application process.
  • Contact the solemnizer to confirm your plans and ensure they accept the booking before your ROM appointment.

5. Attend the Appointment and Make a Declaration

  • Attend an appointment at ROM or via video link (if eligible) to complete the declaration process.
  • Bring all required documents, such as original identification for the bride, groom, and witnesses.
  • Read and sign the declaration.

6. Solemnization Ceremony

  • Ensure all participants, including the bride, groom, witnesses, and solemnizer, are present.
  • If necessary, arrange for an interpreter if the couple does not speak English, Malay, Mandarin, or Tamil.
  • Exchange vows and sign the ceremonial certificate of marriage if desired.
  • The solemnizer will register the marriage online, and a digital copy of the marriage certificate will be emailed to you.

Additional Information

  • Proper attire is required for the ceremony. The groom should wear a shirt and pants or other formal attire, and the bride should wear a dress or other formal attire.
  • If your solemnization is offsite, arrange valet or complimentary parking for your solemnizer and consider inviting them to your reception, although this is not mandatory.
  • Express gratitude to your solemnizer for their service.

Fees

  • For Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents: $42
  • For foreigners: $380
  • A fee of $25 applies for changes to solemnization details after the application has been submitted, up to 5 days before your appointment.

Same-sex Marriage in Singapore

Same-sex marriage is not legal in Singapore. As of current laws and regulations, only heterosexual couples can legally marry in the country.

However, there is an option for LGBTQ+ couples to formalize their relationship through an online solemnization process using platforms like Courtly. This process does not confer the legal status of marriage in Singapore but provides a framework for acknowledgment and commitment. The marriage would still be legally recognized in countries that have already legalized same-sex marriage.  

Marriage in Singapore for Foreigners

Foreigners planning to marry in Singapore need to navigate several legal requirements and administrative procedures.

  1. Legal Requirements: Both parties must be at least 21 years old and free to marry (no existing marriages). Notification to the Registry of Marriages (ROM) must be made 21 days to 3 months before the wedding. Foreigners must have been in Singapore for at least 15 continuous days before filing the notice.
  2. Documentation: Required documents include passports, proof of residence, and a certificate of no impediment from their home country’s embassy, among others.
  3. Process: Couples must attend an appointment at ROM, sign a statutory declaration, and have a solemnization ceremony officiated by an approved solemnizer. The marriage must be solemnized within 12 months of filing the notice.
  4. Costs: Administrative fees for marriage licenses vary, with additional costs for venue rentals and other wedding expenses, which can vary significantly depending on preferences.
  5. Types of Ceremonies: Couples can opt for civil ceremonies or incorporate religious rituals, depending on their preferences and cultural backgrounds.

Courtly: Simplifying the Online Marriage Process in Singapore

Courtly has streamlined the online marriage process in Singapore, emphasizing clear communication and detailed planning. When applying for an online marriage in Singapore through Courtly, it's crucial to maintain open communication with their representatives. Discuss your specific needs, and inquire about required documents, timelines, and any legal aspects that concern you. This proactive approach allows Courtly to customize its services to your situation, minimizing surprises.

Courtly assists in coordinating your virtual ceremony by coordinating with government officials in Utah. Their platform also works with you to organize your ideal ceremony. You confirm details such as the ceremony's date and time, and Courtly handles the rest. Following these steps will help ensure a smooth and successful online marriage experience with Courtly, even if you're based in Singapore or another area.

Step-by-Step Guide for Getting Married Online in Singapore with Courtly

Courtly offers couples the convenience of completing the entire marriage process online, regardless of their location. Obtaining a valid U.S. marriage certificate is made quick and straightforward, often within 48 hours, with minimal documentation required.

Here is a step-by-step guide to using Courtly:

1. Create an account.

To register with Courtly, click on the "Get Married" icon in the top right corner and follow the provided instructions. Once your account is set up, you'll gain access to the platform.

2. Choose the ceremony format, location, and officiant.

Select the ceremony venue and style that best fits your preferences. Depending on your selected time and day, Courtly will pair you with a legally qualified U.S. officiant.

3. Receive confirmation via email after payment.

Complete the payment for your chosen wedding package and await the confirmation email from Courtly. Once confirmed, your wedding plans are set in motion. For comprehensive details on available wedding packages and additional options, refer to the Pricing Page.

4. Celebrate your marriage online with loved ones.

couple from thailand getting married remotely with a licensed officiant via zoom

Finally, enjoy your online wedding from the comfort of your chosen location with a stable internet connection. The ceremony typically lasts about 15 minutes.

After the online wedding, you'll receive a digital copy of your U.S. marriage certificate immediately, with a printed version delivered within 1 to 2 weeks. Additionally, you can download your digital marriage license shortly after the ceremony.

Registration of Online Marriages in Singapore

All marriages contracted outside Singapore are recognized if they comply with the laws of the country where they were solemnized. However, their recognition in Singapore is subject to the Court's determination if validity is questioned.

Registering the Marriage with Local Authorities

  1. Presence Requirement: At least one party must physically be in Singapore for a continuous period of at least 31 days before filing a notice of marriage with the Registrar of Marriages (ROM).
  2. Notice of Marriage: Provide ROM with a notice period of at least 21 days before the intended marriage date, but no later than 6 months in advance.
  3. Age Requirement: Both parties must be at least 21 years old.
  4. No Legal Impediments: Ensure there are no legal impediments to the marriage, such as existing marriages.
  5. Documents Required:
    • Original passports of both parties
    • Original Singapore NRIC or passports of two witnesses above 21 years old
    • Entry and exit date stamps in the passport to prove the 31-day stay in Singapore
    • Letter/Certificate of no impediment from relevant authorities
    • Marriage record search or single status letter from countries of residence
    • Original or certified true copies of divorce or annulment papers (if applicable)
    • For widows/widowers, an original or certified true copy of the death certificate of the late spouse and marriage certificate (if the previous marriage was not registered with ROM).
  6. Document Translation: Documents in foreign languages must be translated into English by a certified translator and authenticated by the respective authorities.

Apostille Certification for Online Marriage Certificates

An apostille is a specialized certificate issued by the Secretary of State or Lieutenant Governor, allowing a legal document from one country to be recognized in another. By obtaining an apostille through Courtly, your marriage certificate is authenticated as valid and compliant with the standards of The Hague Apostille Convention of 1961. This helps with the process of registration in countries that are parties to the convention.

Courtly provides the option to obtain an apostille certification for your marriage certificate. Note that the process typically takes 15 to 30 business days after your online ceremony for the apostille to be obtained and sent to Singapore. This certification enhances the legality and validity of your marriage certificate internationally.

To ensure accuracy, it's recommended to stay informed about apostille requirements in your jurisdiction and consult with Courtly or relevant authorities for the most current information.

Online Marriage and Immigration

When it comes to how online marriages are treated by immigration officials, it's essential to understand that policies can vary widely. Online marriages through platforms like Courtly result in a valid US marriage certificate issued by Utah County, which is recognized by US immigration officials, provided it complies with federal and state laws. For more on this topic, we recommend reading our article on online marriage acceptance by US immigration authorities.

Outside of the US, the online marriage certificate may be treated differently. While many countries accept marriages performed legally in another country, some immigration officials may view an online marriage as less authentic. Demonstrating the authenticity of your relationship is a key aspect of any successful spouse visa application.

The acceptance of virtual weddings by international immigration authorities is subject to change and may depend on specific circumstances and jurisdictions. Given the complexities and variations in immigration laws, we strongly recommend consulting with an immigration lawyer to get accurate and up-to-date advice tailored to your situation. This ensures you understand the legal status of your online marriage and any additional documentation required for recognition.

Remember, Courtly provides a convenient way to get married, but we cannot offer legal advice on immigration matters. Always check with legal professionals or relevant authorities in your jurisdiction for the most accurate information.

Conclusion

This guide has equipped you with essential insights into navigating online marriage procedures in Singapore through Courtly. It covers the legal framework of online marriages, contrasts them with traditional ceremonies, and details the steps for registration and apostille certification. Clear communication with Courtly and careful organization of your ceremony is crucial for a smooth process. Courtly simplifies the online marriage journey in Singapore, ensuring couples embark on their new life together confidently and conveniently.

Let us handle the paperwork.

Getting married is complicated. Courtly simplifies the process and provides everything necessary to get married online, including providing a licensed officiant who can perform a remote ceremony.

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