Why You Need a Marriage Officer

In this blog the beautiful Ava and Simi from Tie The Knot Cape Town takes you through the duties of a marriage officer, what you require as a South African citizen to get legally married and the difference between the Marriage Act and Civil Union Act.

So your marriage officer has got a couple of things to do before, on and after your official wedding day. Love is amazing and if you want to stand in front of your friends and family or you just want to elope and stand on a beach and say to each other, “I love you,” none of it is legal if not done through a marriage officer.

Legalities

That means the person is:

  1. Appointed by the department of home affairs,
  2. They work within a designated company or a designated religious organisation
  3. They are allowed to legally marry people within the borders of South Africa.

It’s their job to ask you the legal questions on the day during your ceremony, they will do the registration signing and they will go off to home affairs afterward and ensure that the paperwork gets signed and approved.

happy couple

Drive the ceremony

Your marriage officer has an important role which is to drive the entire wedding ceremony from the start! Your venue, photographer, DJ and vendors are there to make your day special but everything falls flat if the person standing in front doesn’t really understand the kind of love language, atmosphere and dedication you have towards each other that makes your relationship different from the rest.

Marriage officer

The Marriage Acts

In South Africa there are three different acts regulating marriages but the two we are going to look is the Civil Union Act and the other one is the Marriage Act.

The marriage act hales from 1961 and that’s the one that they had to panel beat to make it race friendly for people of all races to be to get married. The civil union act was brought in in 2006, so they originally started out as the act that made it possible for gay people to get married.

Marriage officer

So what are the parameters that you need to work inside for a legal or lawful marriage in this country?

Under the Civil Union Act, there are only a couple of things that you need to do:

  1. You need to be over 18
  2. You need to be single. That means if you were married before you need to have a divorce decree and you need to check with home affairs in South Africa whether you are still legally married under there population register or not.

Getting married is forever! It means that you say, “You are enough for me for the rest of my life. I go on this adventure with you with absolutely no hold barred and I will take it as it comes because I trust us.”

Why does Tie The Knot use the civil union act for all their weddings?

Well, it’s very simple. The Civil Union act says that there’s no reason to discriminate against anyone in this country. It doesn’t regard you based on your religion, race, gender, orientation or culture that you stand with. It simply marries you as one human to another human.

Isn’t the Civil Union act different in weight or in barring or in content from the Marriage Act?

And the answer is simply, no. The legal consequence of all the marriage acts in this country is exactly the same.

Can you decide under which Act you wanna get married?

Yes, you do. If you don’t want to get married under the Civil Union act then you simply get an officiant who can officiate under the Marriage Act of South Africa.

You get officiants from all walks of life and from all races. From all genders and from all religious backgrounds. So if you would like someone to marry you from a specific denomination or a specific faith, Tie The Knot can definitely help you find that perfect person.

Continue your research with another amazing video from the ladies at Tie The Knot Cape Town:

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