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Elections for the next Mayor of London and London Assembly members, as well as the by-election for Hillrise ward, will take place on Thursday 2 May. Make sure you're registered to vote by midnight on Tuesday 16 April. You can also sign-up to our Voting and Elections bulletin to get reminders and resources to help you vote.

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Ceremonies abroad

If you are planning on getting married abroad there are some things you need to do to make sure your marriage or civil partnership is legal.

First, you’ll need to find out the rules in the country where you are getting married. Use the GOV.UK website to check this or contact the other country's consulate or embassy for advice about the documents you’ll need.

A Certificate of No Impediment is a legal document showing that you are free to marry or register a civil partnership. If you need to apply for one, you can normally do this through your local register office. 

When you can apply for a Certificate of No Impediment

You can apply for a Certificate of No Impediment in Islington if:

  • you are a British subject
  • you live in Islington or the City of London (Islington Council registrars also cover registrations for the City of London Corporation, which is the square mile at the heart of the financial centre in the city. See a map of the area)
  • your proposed spouse or civil partner is a foreign national
  • the marriage or civil partnership ceremony will be outside the UK
  • you have lived in Islington for at least the full seven days before the day of your notice appointment

You can also apply if:

  • you are two resident British subjects (some residence restrictions apply)
  • the marriage or civil partnership ceremony will be outside of the UK.

Apply for a Certificate of No Impediment

You can book an appointment by emailing Please let us know the following details in your email so we book your appointment.

We need:

  • both of your nationalities
  • both of your current addresses
  • where (town and country) you are planning to get married/ form a civil partnership
  • when you are planning to get married/ form a civil partnership

You will need to confirm with the other country's authorities before the appointment:

  • how the place that you getting married should be listed - for example, just the town or city’s name, or the exact building where the ceremony will take place
  • when we need to issue the certificate - this could be around a few months to a year before the ceremony depending on the country.

It usually takes 29 days from the notice appointment to issue the certificate.

Other information

  • Certificates of No Impediment can only be issued for marriages or civil partnerships taking place abroad. They are not single status documents.
  • You can only give notice for a Certificate of No Impediment if you are planning a marriage or civil partnership ceremony to a specific person in a specific country in the next few months. This information is stated on the certificate.
  • If you have been asked for a single status document by another country and you are not planning a marriage or civil partnership, please ask that country’s embassy what else you can supply. We don't hold this information in England and cannot provide a single status document.
  • The General Register Office for England and Wales can issue a letter confirming no trace of marriage record for your name during a set period of time, which may be accepted for some purposes when a single status document is requested. ‘No trace letters’ cost £50 for each 10-year period from age 16 or when you entered the UK. You will need to say how many years you need the search to cover and quote reference ‘SEARCH 123’ when contacting them on 030 0123 1837. It can take up to three weeks for a ‘no trace letter’ to be issued.

If you need to get your document legalised

The local authority abroad may also request that you get your document legalised. This means getting the UK government to confirm that a UK public official’s signature, seal or stamp on the document is genuine. You can do this through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Legalisation Office by following instructions on GOV.UK.

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