What Should I do if I’ve lost my Marriage Certificate?
You can’t file for a divorce without your marriage certificate – that much cannot be disputed. Whilst you may have been told that a copy of this document will not be accepted by the courts, though, you’ve only been told part of the story.
Yes, it’s true that the courts will not accept a photocopy of a marriage certificate, but to state that they will not accept a copy of any kind is simply not true. Provided the copy is obtained from the correct source, then it will be accepted by the courts. And it’s as easy as going back to the people that issued you with the certificate in the first place!
Yes, if you need a copy of your marriage certificate that can legally replace the original, then you need to visit the register office that originally issued the certificate and request a certified copy of it. You’ll need to provide them with your and your spouse’s name and the date on which you were married and, for £9.25, you’ll be provided with the document that you need. It really is that easy. In fact, you can even do it online!
If you married abroad, then the process of obtaining a legally acceptable copy of your marriage certificate will differ by country. We’d therefore recommend that you contact the British embassy within the relevant county and seek their advice before proceeding.