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Ceremonies Abroad

Your marriage or civil partnership will be legally recognised in the UK if:

  • You follow the correct legal process in the country where your ceremony will take place
  • It would be allowed under UK Law

You don’t need to register your marriage or civil partnership in the UK if the above apply.

If you are getting married or forming a civil partnership outside of England and Wales, different rules will apply depending on the country where your ceremony will be held. 

You may have to provide a Certificate of No Impediment.

A Certificate of No Impediment confirms there are no objections to a proposed marriage or civil partnership and is sometimes required if you are planning a ceremony abroad.

The certificates have no expiry dates, but different countries have their own rules about what is acceptable.

The authorities in the country where you are planning to hold your ceremony will advise what legal paperwork they require before your ceremony can take place.

You should also check if the certificate needs to be legalised – 'apostilled' - or translated. Further information regarding legalisation of the certificate can be found at Get your document legalised - GOV.UK (

East Sussex Registration can sometimes issue Certificates of No Impediment depending on the countries and nationalities involved.

If you are British national and an East Sussex County Council resident, requiring a Certificate of No Impediment, call us on 0345 60 80 198 or contact us with the following information about both you and your partner:

  • Nationality
  • Place of residence
  • Date of Ceremony
  • Town, local authority, and country where the ceremony will take place

Celebration Ceremonies 

Include those who were unable to attend your ceremony abroad with a bespoke celebration ceremony here in East Sussex. For more information see Ceremonies with a Difference


Arranging a ceremony will require you to share some personal information with us. For details about how and why we use your data refer to our Privacy Notice. 

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