Choosing a surname after marriage?

See Surname after marriage or common-law registration

Getting Married in Manitoba

You can choose to have your marriage performed by a marriage commissioner or clergy member who is registered to officiate marriages in Manitoba.

If you are getting married in Manitoba, you must:

STEP 1: Buy a marriage licence
  • Buy a marriage licence at least 24 hours before the marriage (Note: It is only valid for marriages being performed in Manitoba and is only valid for three months).
  • Both parties must be present to buy the marriage licence from a registered issuer in your area (see Download List below).
  • Be single, divorced, or widowed:
    • Single - (never married) and over 18 years of age
    • Divorced persons are required to show one of:
      • Divorce Certificate
      • Decree Absolute
    • Widowed - persons whose spouse is deceased must show:
      • Death Certificate or
      • Funeral Home Statement of Death or
      • Obituary clipping from the newspaper
  • Provide identification for proof of age (18 years or older).
    • Acceptable documents for identification can include:
      • Birth Certificate
      • Passport or US Passport Card
      • Citizenship Certificate (Canadian or United States)
      • Canada Immigration documents
      • Canadian Armed Forces Identification Card
      • Government of Canada Indian Status Card
      • Driver's Licence (photo ID) with one of the following:
        • Manitoba Health Card
        • Senior Citizen Card/Old Age Security Card
        • Change of Name Certificate
        • Social Insurance Card

Any documents used must be in, or translated into, English or French

If you have any questions about the Marriage Licence requirements, call our office at 204-945-3701 or 1-866-949-9296, Monday to Friday 8:30-4:30.

A Marriage Licence and Registration of Marriage is a permanent legal document.

When you buy your Marriage Licence and Registration of Marriage, before signing the oath on the Declaration of Parties (green form), please read through the entire form to make certain that all fields completed by the issuer are clearly legible, accurate, and fully completed. If there are any omissions or errors on the Marriage Licence and Registration of Marriage, Manitoba law determines how, or even if, changes can be made to a permanent legal record and requires payment of fees to do so.

  • Print legibly
  • Don't use abbreviations, nicknames, or initials
  • Use full legal names as they appear on your government issued identification
  • If the name on the marriage registration doesn't exactly match the name on your identification you may encounter difficulties
  • Vital Statistics Branch permanently maintains a copy of the registration form exactly as it is received. Once received by the Branch, it becomes a permanent legal document
  • Do not assume the registration can be changed or corrected later
  • A marriage certificate cannot be issued until the registration is complete, resulting in delays and inconvenience to newlyweds

STEP 2: Meet with your clergy or marriage commissioner

Before your Ceremony Date, you must:
  • Make your arrangements with a clergy or a marriage commissioner.
  • Give your licence and the white self-addressed envelope to your marriage commissioner or clergy.

STEP 3: Officiant completes Marriage Registration form and sends to Vital Statistics Branch

After your Ceremony:
  • Both parties, your two witnesses, and the clergy or marriage commissioner who performed the ceremony must all sign the Marriage Registration
  • The clergy or marriage commissioner must send the Marriage Registration to Vital Statistics Branch to officially register your marriage

Note: Vital Statistics Branch does not automatically issue a Marriage Certificate. You have to apply for your Marriage Certificate.

  • Marriage Licence: $100.00
  • Marriage Commissioner: $50.00 plus reasonable fees for related expenses such as travel.
  • Clergy: (fees are determined by the religious group in question)

Download List
Apply to become a Marriage Commissioner:

One-Time Marriage Commissioner Application Form
5-Year Marriage Commissioner Application Form

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