Legal Recognition

Legal recognition of humanist marriage

While for most couples the Humanist Ceremony is the centre of their wedding, where family and friends come together to witness them making their commitment to each other, at the moment, a Humanist Wedding Ceremony is not a legal ceremony in England or Wales.

Humanist Marriage ceremonies are legal in Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland and Jersey and Guernsey. Humanists UK are constantly lobbying the UK government to make Humanist marriage legally recognised. The legislation was passed in 2013 and all that is required is for the relevant government minister to sign an order. Hopefully it will not be much longer.

Consequently, you will need to have a short legal ceremony with an official registrar at some point. Many couples go to the register office a day or two before with witnesses and take care of the legal aspects with no ceremony, and many register offices offer cheaper ceremonies mid-week.

And I am always happy to travel to Scotland to conduct your legal humanist marriage there if you choose.