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How To Get Married in Ireland As An LGBTQIA+ Couple

Planning your dream wedding as an LGBTQIA+ couple in Ireland is an adventure that promises to celebrate your love in a country known for its warm embrace of diversity and inclusion. With the legalisation of same-sex marriage and a vibrant LGBTQIA+ community, Ireland has become a sought-after destination for unforgettable gay weddings. In this blog, we'll dive into the essential details of getting married as an LGBT couple in Ireland.

From legalities to ceremony options and beyond, let's explore how you can turn your love story into a magnificent chapter against the stunning backdrop of the Emerald Isle. Whether you're envisioning a magical same-sex wedding, a gay elopement, or a fabulous celebration, Ireland has everything you need to make your wedding dreams come true! 🏳️‍🌈

1. Marriage equality in Ireland

Let's start with a big shoutout to Ireland for being an absolute trailblazer in the quest for marriage equality! In May 2015, Ireland became the first country to legalise same-sex marriage through a popular vote, sending a powerful message of love, acceptance, and equality.

2. Notification of marriage

In Ireland, all marriage notifications are handled through the Civil Registration Service. But wait! Before you can give notice to the Civil Registration Service, you need to book your wedding venue. Don't forget to make sure your chosen wedding venue is LGBTQIA+ - you can find a list of venues here (there are many more, these are just a few!). You also need to decide whether you will have a religious, humanist or secular marriage, or a civil marriage ceremony, and book a registered solemniser (such as a celebrant). Here is some more detailed info for each type of ceremony:

Religious ceremonies

If you would like a religious LGBTQIA+ wedding ceremony, it needs to be performed by a registered solemniser of that specific religion, and take place in a place of worship. Currently, the Catholic Church of Ireland and the Church of Ireland does not allow same-sex marriage in a church in the Republic of Ireland, however tYou'll need to contact the place of worship to get information on how to get married there. Usually they'll have a paperwork you'll need to fill in and documents you'll have to provide.

Secular ceremonies

Civil ceremonies

3. Meeting the legal requirements

To marry as a same-sex couple in Ireland, you and your partner must be at least 18 years old and free to marry. This means that both of you can't be married, in a civil partnership (with other people) or have any other legal barriers to marriage. You and your partner must give at least three months’ notice (up to a year in advance) to the Civil Registration Service in the county where you will get married - like the Civil Registration Office in Dublin, or Cork, for example.

4. Booking your appointment

Once you know where you're getting married, when and by who, you can book an appointment online here

If you can't attend the notification appointment at least three months before you want to get married (because you're living overseas, or you have another reason), you'll need to contact the Civil Registration Service in the county you're getting married. You can their contact info here!

5. What to bring

If you live in Ireland, or can be in Ireland a minimum of three months before you marry

If you don't live in Ireland, and/or can't be in Ireland a minimum of three months before the wedding

To make the process quicker, you can download a Capture of Data document (don't forget to fill it out in block capitals!) and present it to the Registrar on the day of your appointment.

Identity documents

  • Valid photo ID

  • Photocopy of the photo page of your passport

  • Birth certificate (original and photocopy) - non-EU applicants need either an Apostille on the document or attached to it (Hague Convention parties), or authentication by your country's Embassy (non-Hague Convention parties). To see if your country is a Hague Convention party member, click here.

  • Proof of address (original and photocopy, dated within the last 3 months)

  • Your PPS numbers

Ceremony details

  • The type of ceremony (civil, religious or secular)

  • Name and address of your wedding venue

  • Name of registered solemniser

  • Names and dates of birth of two witnesses (aged 18 or older)

Other documents

  • If you're divorced, you need an original or certified copy, and photocopy, of your divorce decree

  • If you're a widow or widower, you will need the original and photocopy of any civil marriage/civil partnership certificates and civil death certificate of the spouse or civil partner who has died

  • If you're already in a civil partnership together (registered in Ireland), you'll need to contact the Civil Registration Service directly to discuss this, and then bring along the original and a photocopy of the civil partnership certificate. The fee for registering your marriage is also reduced down from €200 to €50 if you're converting your civil partnership to a marriage - yay!

  • If you have a civil annulment, you will need the original and photocopy of the civil annulment court order and a court letter and photocopy confirming that an appeal has not been lodged against the nullity order

Non-EU citizens

If either of you is not a citizen of Ireland or another EU member country, you'll need to confirm your immigration status as well. Bring along one of the following:

  • Original letter from the Department of Justice and Equality confirming your immigration status

  • Refugee or asylum card from the Department of Justice and Equality

  • Immigration visa or stamp or Irish residency permit

  • Passport - if you are a UK citizen

6. The marriage notification appointment

OMG - the day is finally here (well, almost)! It's the day you meet the Registrar at the Civil Registration Service office. When you meet the Registrar, you will need to sign a declaration that you are free to marry and know of no reason why you cannot legally be married. After this is done, the Registrar will give an acknowledgement to both of you and your priest/celebrant/whoever is marrying you to confirm everything. Then, you'll pay the notification fee, and if everything's in order, the Registrar will issue you with a Marriage Registration Form AKA The Green Folder. Make sure you keep this somewhere safe!

7. The big day

On your wedding day, you and your witnesses need to sign The Green Folder (MRF). You'll then get a marriage certificate and bam! You're legally married in Ireland 🙌

8. Registering your marriage

Before everything is 100% legit, you will need to register your marriage in Ireland, and exactly how depends on the type of ceremony you have.

  • For civil marriages, the Registrar will do it all for you

  • For religious or secular marriages, you have to bring The Green Folder to any Civil Registration Office within 1 month of the date of marriage. Usually, you can just walk-in and drop off the folder but be sure to call in case! Here's the info.

As an LGBTQIA+ couple planning your wedding in Ireland, consider enlisting the help of a wedding planner who specialises in creating magical moments for couples like you. They'll have insider knowledge, LGBTQIA+-friendly vendor recommendations, and the organisational skills to ensure that your wedding day is everything you've dreamed of.

At Wednesday Wedding Club, we live and breathe love in all its vibrant shades. We love curating unforgettable wedding experiences for LGBTQIA+ couples in Ireland. Contact us here and let's make magic happen! ✨🌈


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