Here at Quickie Divorce, we’re regularly asked questions about marriage certificates. Whether it be from were a certified copy can be obtained, or why the courts need this document in order to process a divorce, we’ve quite literally heard it all.
In all fairness, the latter question seems like a pretty reasonable one. Why, after all, should anyone need to prove that they’re married when filing for a divorce? It’s reasonable enough to conclude that no-one would file for a divorce unless they were married and had concluded that their marriage had irretrievably broken down, surely? Well, no, actually!
Believe it or not, the courts require proof of marriage as, over the years, many people have filed for divorce presuming that a long-relationship has automatically resulted in them having eloped. Others have mistakenly assumed that they became married following a drunken weekend in a certain American city renowned for 24-hour gambling and impromptu weddings. The courts, therefore, require proof of marriage because, well… they don’t want people applying to dissolve a marriage that simply doesn’t exist.
We’re also regularly asked whether or not the courts will return marriage certificates following the divorce having been finalised. Generally, the Decree Absolute (a certificate that is sent to both parties following the marriage having been dissolved) will replace this document as it serves as not only proof of the fact that the parties are now divorced, but also that they were once married. Nevertheless, if you still wish to keep a copy of your marriage certificate for sentimental reasons, then, just contact the courts and let them know, they may be able to return it to you.
Ultimately, the most important pieces of information that will be featured on your marriage certificate – when filing for a divorce, at least – are you and your spouse’s names and your place of marriage as they appear on said document. This information will need to be featured in your divorce petition and, should the information featured in this document differ from what is present on your certificate only slightly, then the courts are likely to reject your application.
So, remember, your marriage certificate is absolutely key to divorce proceedings. For more information on divorce, click here.