A Detailed Guide on Applying for a Marriage License in the Philippines 2016


As little children, girls (and maybe some boys too) would dream of a fairytale-like, perfect wedding. Girls, especially, will wish of someday walking down the aisle in her most beautiful gown ever with her prince charming waiting for her at the altar – you know, similar to the Disney princess stories we grew up with. The idea of marriage was very simple.

Fast-forward to many years later, these girls have grown up into beautiful women and have found their prince charmings. Lo and behold, they decide to take on a new journey – starting a life together.

And so they start to jot down the details to making their fairytale-like weddings a reality. But alas! They have discovered that traveling the path towards marriage is not like having a walk in the park.

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There are important things that you must accomplish before you can finally exchange your “I dos”. You will realize that your wedding is not just about fellowship, food, drinks, merrymaking, and the like. There are a lot of things that need to be accomplished beforehand. One of this is getting the Marriage License. Without it, you won’t be allowed to have a church or civil wedding.

One of this is getting the Marriage License. Without it, you won’t be allowed to have a church or civil wedding.

The following is a detailed and step-by-step procedure in getting the marriage license, whether you are marrying a Filipino, an American, or a man with a different nationality as yours.

Both parties must present themselves personally to the local registrar of the city. If one of you is not a Filipino, then it is just but right to go to the town, city, or municipality where the Filipino partner resides. The release of the marriage license can take up to 2 weeks (10 business days) after the application.

Once you get hold of your marriage license, you can now get married anywhere in the Philippines. However, remember one important thing: The Marriage License has a validity of 120 days from day of issuance. It “shall be deemed automatically cancelled at the expiration of said period if the contracting parties have not made use of it.”

(Photo: Blogspot)
(Photo: Blogspot)

Presenting yourself to the local registrar is the easy part. Gathering the required documents is a bit trickier and time consuming. The following are the documents you need to have:

  • Certified true copy both of you and your partner’s NSO birth certificates (1 original and 2 photocopies). NSO birth certificates can be obtained from your local NSO offices. If you need help, you can contact them through NSO Helpline Plus phone number (632) 737-1111 or through email e-census.info@mail.census.gov.ph
  • Affidavit of parental consent or advice. This is only applicable for couples who are younger than 18 years old and 21 years old, for women and men, respectively. If you do not have living parents, you can get a consent from your guardian. On the other hand, if both of you are of legal age but still under 25 years old, then a written parental advice stating that your parents know your intention to marry will be necessary. You can do this in two ways: bring your parents during application or submit a notarized letter of consent/advice.
  • Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) or Certificate of Singleness (1 original and 1 photocopy).  You’d want to make sure the coast is clear, right? No holdbacks, no obligations, nothing. This document will prove just that. CENOMAR will be your proof that you haven’t undergone marriage before. To get one, simply go to your NSO and bring some cash for the fee. The latest is that it would cost you Php 195. The release is after 4 working days.
  • Certificate of Attendance in a pre-marriage counseling, family planning, and responsible parenthood seminar. The pre-marriage counseling is conducted by either the Church (for church weddings) or the DSWD (for civil marriages). On the other hand, the family planning and responsible parenthood seminar is conducted by the Department of Health’s Division of Maternal and Child Health. It is available in your area. Remember that all these seminars are a must. If you fail to attend one or both, you will be asked to attend it before the day of your wedding.
  • Community Tax Certificate or Cedula (1 original and 2 photocopies). You can get this from your municipal or city hall. Fee would depend on your monthly income.
  • Barangay clearance (1 original and 1 photocopy)
  • At least 2 valid IDs. Valid IDs include any of the following:
Philippine Passport – Department of Foregn Affairs
2.  Driver’s License – Land Transportation Office
3.  PRC ID – Professional Regulations Commission
4.  NBI Clearance – National Bureau of Investigation
5.  Police clearance – Philippine National Police
6.  Postal ID – Philippine Postal Corporation
7.  Voter’s ID – Commission on Election
8.  Barangay Certification – Barangay Hall
9.  GSIS card – Government Service Insurance System
10.  SSS card – Social Security System
11.  Diplomat ID – Philippine Embassy
12.  OWWA ID – Overseas Workers Welfare Administration
13.  OFW ID – Department of Labor and Employment
14.  Seaman’s Book – Maritime Industry Authority
15.  Alien Certificate of Registration (ACR)/Immigrant Certification of Registration – Bureau of Immigration
16.  Philhealth Card – Philhealth
17.  Birth Certificate – National Statistics Office
18.  Marriage Contract – National Statistics Office
19.  Community Tax Certificate – Barangay Hall
20.  TIN Card – Bureau of Internal Revenue
21.  OSCA / Senior Citizen’s Card – Office of Senior Citizen’s Affairs
22.  POEA Card – Philippine Overseas Employment Association
23.  Consular ID – Philippine Embassy
24.  PRA Special Resident Retiree Visa – Philippine Retirement Authority
25.  NCWDP Certification – National Council for the Welfare of Disabled Persons
26.  DSWD Certification – Department of Social Welfare and Development
27.  BIR Taxpayer’s ID – Bureau of Internal Revenue
28.  Firearms License – PNP Firearms and Explosives Office
29.  PLRA ID – Philippine Leisure and Retirement Authority
30.  Student’s ID – School Registrar’s Office
  • Recent 1 x 1 photo (colored or black and white)
  • Marriage license application form. This is issued by the LCR office.
(Photo: Filipiknow)

Other requirements for application for marriage license in the Philippines. Remember that this is in addition to the abovementioned requirements:

  1. If annulled, the individual must get his/her Certificate of Finality of Annulment from the Court (1 original and 2 photocopies) and Certificate of Registration from the Local Civil Registrar (1 original and 2 photocopies).
  2. If widowed, Death Certificate of deceased spouse

For foreigners who wish to get married in the Philippines, they must submit the following:

  1. Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage. This document will prove that the foreigner is eligible for marriage and has no other obligations or past marriage in his/her home country. This is issued by the consular office/embassy of the foreigner’s country.
  2. A photocopy of passport.

Once all of the documents are complete and all forms have been filled, you can now go to your local registrar and present yourselves and the documents you have.