PART V
REGISTRATION OF MARRIAGES

40. Persons by whom marriages are to be registered

Subject to the provisions of Part VI, a marriage shall be registered in accordance with this Part by the following person, that is to say —

(a) in the case of a marriage solemnized according to the rites of the Church of England, by the [cleric] by whom the marriage is solemnized; ....


NOTE S.40: word in square brackets in subs.(1) substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.52.

41. Provision of marriage register books by Chief Registrar

(1) The Chief Registrar shall furnish to —

(a) the [incumbent] of every church and chapel in which marriages may be solemnized according to the rites of the Church of England [...]; ....
such number of register books for making entries of marriages in the prescribed form, and such number of forms for making certified copies of those entries, as may be required for the purposes of this Part.

(2) Marriage register books so furnished shall be of durable materials, and the heads of information required to be known and registered in relation to marriages shall be printed on each side of every leaf thereof, and every page of a marriage register book, and every place of entry therein, shall be numbered progressively from the begining to the end of the book, beginning with the number one, and every entry shall be divided from the following entry by a printed line.


NOTE S.41: word in square brackets in subs.(1) substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.28; words omitted in subs.(1) repealed by ib. Sch.5.

42. Manner of registration of marriages

(1) Every person who is required under this Part to register a marriage shall, immediately after the solemnization of the marriage, register in duplicate in 2 marriage register books the particulars relating to the marriage in the prescribed form, except that where a registrar is required to register a marriage, the particulars need not be registered in duplicate.

(2) Every entry made in a marriage register book by virtue of this section shall be signed by the clergyman, minister or registrar by whom the marriage is solemnized, as the case may be, and by the parties to the marriage and 2 witnesses.

(3) Every entry made in a marriage register book by virtue of this section shall be made in consecutive order from the beginning to the end of each book and, in the case of an entry made otherwise than by a registrar, the number of the entry shall be the same in each duplicate marriage register book.

43. Quarterly returns to be made to the Chief Registrar

(1) Every incumbent, principal minister of a registered building and registrar shall in the months of January, April, July and October on such days as may be appointed by the Chief Registrar —

(a) make and deliver to the Chief Registrar, on forms supplied by the Chief Registrar, a true copy certified by him in the prescribed manner of all entries of marriages made in the marriage register book kept by him during the period of 3 months ending with the last day of the previous month; or
(b) if no marriage has been registered in the book during that period, deliver to the Chief Registrar a certificate to that effect under his hand, on a form supplied by the Chief Registrar.

(2) The Chief Registrar shall pay or cause to be paid the prescribed fee to every incumbent or minister by whom a certified copy is delivered under subsection (1).

(3) The certified copies sent to the Chief Registrar under this section and the register books sent to him under section 45(1) and (2) shall be kept at such place or places in such order and such manner as the Chief Registrar, subject to any directions of the Clerk of the Rolls, may think fit.

44. Custody of register books

Every incumbent, the principal minister of every registered building and every registrar shall keep marriage register books safely until they are filled, in accordance with regulations under section 51.

45. Filled register books

(1) Where any marriage register book required to be kept in duplicate under this Part is filled, one copy thereof shall be delivered to the Chief Registrar and the other copy-

(a) in the case of a register book kept by an incumbent, shall remain in the custody of the incumbent and be kept by him with the registers of baptisms and burials of the parish in which the marriages registered therein have been solemnized; ....

46. Correction of errors in register book

(1) A person required to register a marriage under this Part who discovers an error in the form or substance of an entry made in a marriage register book kept by him shall not be liable to any penalty by reason only that, within one month after the discovery of the error, he corrects the erroneous entry in the presence of the parties to the marriage to which the entry relates or, in the case of the death or absence of either of those parties, in the presence of the Chief Registrar and 2 other credible witnesses, by entry in the margin of the register book, without any alteration of the original entry.

(2) Any such marginal entry shall be signed by the person by whom the entry is made and shall be attested by the persons in whose presence the entry is required to be made under subsection (1), and the person by whom the entry is made shall add the date when it is made.

(3) Where any such marginal entry is made by a person who is required to register marriages in duplicate under this Part that person shall make the like entry, attested in the like manner, in the duplicate marriage register book.

(4) Any person who makes any such marginal entry aforesaid shall make the like entry in the certified copy of the register book required to be made by him under this Part or, if a certified copy has already been delivered to the Chief Registrar, shall make and deliver to the Chief Registrar a separate certified copy of the original erroneous entry and of the marginal correction made therein.

43. Disposal of register books on church ceasing to be used for solemnization of marriages

(1) Where any church or chapel of the Church of England ceases to be used for the solemnization of marriages, whether by reason of demolition, revocation of a licence or otherwise, any marriage register books in the custody of the incumbent of that church or chapel shall forthwith be delivered to the incumbent of the church which is, or becomes, the parish church of the parish in which the disused church or chapel is situated.

(2) Any incumbent to whom any marriage register books have been delivered under subsection (1)-

(a) shall, when he next delivers to the Chief Registrar under this Part a certified copy of the entries in the marriage register books of marriages solemnized in the parish church, deliver also a copy of all entries which have been made in the first mentioned marriage register books after the date of the last entry therein of which a certified copy has already been delivered to the Chief Registrar; and
(b) shall, unless the said first mentioned marriage register books are the only register books in use for the parish, forward such of the said books as have not been filled to the Chief Registrar in order that they may be formally closed.

48. Searches in register books

Every incumbent, principal minister of a registered building and registrar by whom a marriage register book is kept shall at all reasonable hours allow searches to be made in any marriage register book in his keeping, and shall give a copy certified under his hand of any entry in such a book, on payment of the prescribed fee.

49. Searches of indexes kept by Chief Registrar

(1) The Chief Registrar shall cause indexes of all certified copies of entries in marriage register books sent to him under this Part to be made and kept in the General Registry.

(2) Any person shall be entitled to search the said indexes at any time when the General Registry is open for that purpose, and to have a certified copy of any entry in the said certified copies of marriage register books, on payment to the Chief Registrar of the prescribed fee.

(3) Any certified copy of an entry given in the General Registry shall be signed by or on behalf of the Chief Registrar; and any certified copy of an entry purporting to be so signed shall be received as evidence of the marriage to which it relates without any further or other proof of the entry.

. . . . .


NOTE S.50 repealed by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.5.

PART VI
GENERAL

. . . . .


NOTE S.A51 (inserted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.30) relates to marriages under Parts III and IV.

51 Tynwald control of orders and regulations

[(1) The Clerk of the Rolls may make regulations prescribing any matter (other than the amount of, or the method of computing, any fee or allowable expense) which by this Act may be prescribed.

(2) Regulations under subsection (1) may provide that a person who contravenes the regulations commits an offence and is liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £5,000.

(3) Regulations under subsection (1) shall be laid before Tynwald as soon as practicable after they are made, and, if they contain provision under subsection (2) shall cease to have effect if Tynwald, at the sitting before which they are laid or the next following sitting does not approve them.

(4) An order made by the Clerk of the Rolls under section A51(1) shall be laid before Tynwald as soon as practicable after it is made.

(5) The Treasury may by regulations prescribe the amount of, or the method of computing, any fee or allowable expense under any provision of this Act.

(6) An order under section 1(3) or regulations under subsection (5) shall not have effect unless approved by Tynwald.]


NOTE S.51 substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.30.

52 Offences relating to solemnization of marriage

(1) A person commits an offence if he knowingly and wilfully solemnizes a marriage according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England —

(a) without banns having been duly published, except on the authority of a special licence or a common licence;
(b) anywhere other than a church or other building in which banns may be published, except on the authority of a special licence; or
(c) falsely pretending to be in Holy Orders. . . . . .

(5) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable —

(a) on conviction on information, to custody for not more than 2 years or a fine or both;
(b) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £5,000.

(6) Proceedings for an offence under this section shall not be instituted more than 3 years after the commission of the offence.


NOTE S.52 substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.30.

54 Offences relating to the recording of marriages

[(1) A person who refuses or fails to comply with the provisions of this Part is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person who refuses, or without reasonable cause omits, to register a marriage which this Act requires that person to register, is guilty of an offence.

(3) A person is guilty of an offence if, having a marriage register book in his custody —

(a) he carelessly loses or injures the book; or
(b) he carelessly allows the book to be injured.

(4) If a person required under Part V to make and deliver to the Chief Registrar —

(a) a certified copy of entries made in the marriage register book kept by the person; or
(b) a certificate that there have been no entries made in that book since the date of the last certified copy,
refuses to deliver any such copy or certificate, or fails to deliver any such copy or certificate, at the time appointed by the Chief Registrar under section 43, that person is guilty of an offence.

(5) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £5,000. . . . . .]


NOTE S.54 substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.30.

55 Interpretation etc.

(1) In this Act —

"aircraft" shall be construed in accordance with Part A of Schedule 1 to the Air Navigation (Isle of Man) Order 2007;. . .
"banns" means banns of matrimony;
"child", except where used to express a relationship, means a person under the age of eighteen;
"child of the family" in relation to any person, means a child who has lived in the same household as that person and been treated by that person as a child of his or her family;
"cleric" means a clerk in Holy Orders of the Church of England and includes a clerk in Holy Orders of the Church in Wales, the Church of Ireland or the Scottish Episcopal Church; . . .
"incumbent", in relation to a church or chapel in which marriages may be solemnized according to the rites of the Church of England, means —
(a) the incumbent of the benefice in the area of which the church or chapel is situated,
(b) if there is no incumbent, the priest-in-charge of that benefice,
(c) if there is no incumbent or priest-in-charge of the benefice and a team ministry has been established for that benefice, any vicar in the team ministry to whom a special cure of souls has been assigned for the area in which the church or chapel is situated, and
(d) if none of paragraphs (a) to (c) applies, such cleric as is designated in writing by the Bishop to exercise the function of the incumbent under this Act; . . .
"parish" means an ecclesiastical parish;
"prescribed" means prescribed by regulations made under section 51;
"public chapel" means a chapel licensed by the Bishop under section 14(1) for the solemnization of marriages; . . .
"registrar" means a registrar of marriages;
"special licence" has the meaning assigned to it by section 5; . . .]

. . . .


NOTE S.55 substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.30, and numbered as subs.(1) by Marriage and Civil Partnership (Amendment) Act 2016 s.25(2); subs.(2) relates to marriages under Part III.

56. Transitional provisions, consequential amendments and savings

. . . . .

(4) Nothing in this Act affects any law or custom relating to the marriage of members of the Royal Family.

(5) Nothing in this Act affects the right of the Bishop to grant special licences to marry at any convenient time or place.

(6) Nothing in this Act affects the validity of any marriage solemnized before the commencement of this Act.

(7) Nothing in this Act enables any proceedings to be taken in an ecclesiastical court which could not have been taken if this Act had not been passed.

(8) Nothing in this Act requires any caution or security to be given which would not have required to be given if this Act had not been passed.

57. Short title and commencement

(1) This Act may be cited as the Marriage Act 1984.

(2) This Act shall come into operation on the same day as the Civil Registration Act 1984.


NOTE: The Act was brought into force on 1st January 1985 by GC 271/84.

SCHEDULE 1
PROHIBITED DEGREES OF RELATIONSHIP
PART 1
THE PROHIBITIONS

1. (1) The list referred to in section 1(1)(c) is —

Adoptive child
Adoptive parent
Child
Former adoptive child
Former adoptive parent
Grandparent
Grandchild
Parent
Parent's sibling
Sibling
Sibling's child.

(2) In subparagraph (1) "sibling" means a brother, sister, half-brother or half-sister.

PART 2
DEGREES OF AFFINITY REFERRED TO IN SECTION 1(2)

2. (1) The list referred to in section 1(2) is —

[Child of former civil partner]
Child of former spouse
[Former civil partner of grandparent]
Former spouse of grandparent
[Former civil partner of parent]
Former spouse of parent
Former spouse of child
. . . .
[Grandchild of former civil partner]
Grandchild of former spouse.

(2) In sub-paragraph (1) "child", in relation to any person, includes a person who is a child of the family (as defined in paragraph 13) in relation to that person.

PART 3
SPECIAL PROVISIONS RELATING TO QUALIFIED PROHIBITIONS

Marriage according to the rites of the Church of England

3. Paragraphs 4 to 7 apply where two persons are subject to paragraph 2 but intend to marry according to the rites of the Church of England.

4. The marriage shall not be solemnized after the publication of banns.

5. (1) A common licence shall not be granted for the solemnization of the marriage unless —

(a) the person having authority to grant the licence is satisfied by the production of evidence that both the persons to be married have reached the age of 21 years; and
(b) that person has received a declaration in writing made by each of those persons specifying their affinal relationship and declaring that the younger of those persons has not at any time before reaching the age of 18 been a child of the family in relation to the other.

(2) Sub-paragraph (1) does not apply if a declaration is obtained under paragraph 7.

6. Where a caveat is entered under section 13(2) against the grant of a common licence for the solemnization of the marriage on the ground that —

(a) the persons to be married have not both reached the age of 21 years, or
(b) one of those persons has at any time before reaching 18 been a child of the family in relation to the other,
then, even though the caveat is withdrawn by the person who entered it, no licence shall be granted unless the Vicar General has certified that he has examined into that ground of objection and is satisfied that that ground ought not to obstruct the grant of the licence.

7. Either of the proposed parties to the marriage may apply to the Vicar General for a declaration that, given that —

(a) both of them have reached the age of 21 years, and
(b) the younger of those persons has not at any time before reaching 18 been a child of the family in relation to the other,
there is no impediment of affinity to the solemnization of the marriage.. . . . .

Interpretation

13. In this Part "child of the family", in relation to any person, means a child who has been treated by that person as a child of that person's family.]


NOTE Sch.1 substituted by Marriage and Civil Registration (Amendment) Act 2011 Sch.1 para.31; words in square brackets in para.2(1) inserted by Civil Partnership Act 2011 Sch.14 para.70; words in para.2(1) omitted by Marriage and Civil Partnership (Amendment) Act 2016 s.28(1).