Why Indian will need a single status certificate to marry?

Why Indian will need a single status certificate to marry?

If an Indian is planning to get married in another country with a foreigner he or she will be required a document called a Single Status Certificate.

It is a crucial part of the marriage registration process in a foreign country. If the affiant has previously been married, this paper certifies that they are eligible to marry and that they do not have any dependent on that marriage. In order to begin a fresh path of wedded life, the divorcee can also apply for a single status certificate.

No judiciary in India has ever issued a show cause order to establish a future spouse's single status prior to marriage. Although the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955 (for Hindus) and the Special Marriage Act of 1954 (for Religions Other Than Hindu) provide provisions for marriage certification, but no mandate to show proof of bachelorhood prior.

Almost every European country and some Asian countries, like the Philippines, Malaysia, China and Indonesia, have provisioned to present the certificate of no marriage (CENOMAR). Despite being known by different names, the motto of all of these docs is synonymous, i.e. to prove the singleness of an individual.

A Single Status Certificate, also sometimes known as a Bachelorhood Certificate, is simply put, a certificate proving one’s bachelorhood. Or in other words, a legal document that specifies one’s marital status as per the judiciary laws of the country. Unlike an official document, it is a self-sworn statement stating that the affiant is single, or has no dependents (in case of a divorce) from any previous marriages. This provides the affiant with the license to tie the knot in any foreign country.

Why do you need the attestation of a Single Status Certificate?

In India, it is not necessary to showcase that one is single or a bachelor. However, nearly every country in the world demands that a person be unmarried in order to solemnize a marriage in that specific country. This is to avoid polygamy and illegal marriages from happening. To allow a person to wed someone abroad, a Single Status Certificate, also known as a CENOMAR (certificate of no marriage record) is required. In certain cases, the documents to show your bachelorhood is also called a celibacy certificate, or a certificate of no impediment.

A plain statement stating the marital status is not valid, & therefore need to undergo certificate attestation or certificate apostille. Attestation of documents simply refers to the legalization of a particular document to increase its authenticity by the home government. However, for certain countries, that are part of the Hague Convention, a certificate apostille is required. The Attestation of Single Status Certificate makes the document legal and acceptable in every country. 

Who is the Issuing authority? 

There is no specific issuing authority because a Single Status Certificate is not required in India. But after submitting the required proof of bachelorhood, the affidavit can be prepared by a notary public and stamped by a District Magistrate (DM) or Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM). After that, the affidavit must undergo certified attestation at the relevant embassy and be stamped with the Home Department's or Ministry of External Affairs' permission (MEA).

What are documents required?

For the procedure of attestation of a Single Status Certificate, there is a set of documents necessary. These include - 

  • Affidavit 

  • Address proof 

  • A Passport or Visa

  • Proof of Birth 

  • Proof from parents

Along with the above-mentioned documents, they have to produce the following - 

  1. Decree Absolute if the affiant is legally divorced, or

  2. Death Certificate in case of death of their former spouse

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