Preparing Your Wedding Requirements

Just when you thought all you need to get married is a groom and the Church, you realize that the road to forever is a work in progress. And it all starts with your wedding requirements – both legal and Catholic Church documents. I tell you, there are quite a lot! I have been in your shoes and I had to skim through various websites and call numerous hotlines just to help me get everything done. Apart from the checklist and the cost, be sure to note the validity of the documents because timing is really key.

Here’s my attempt to make it become more bearable for you, lovely bride. Good luck!

Oh, these crazy fools.

Oh, these crazy fools.

Legal Requirements:

1. Birth Certificate – Thank God for the Internet! Documents you needed to line up for before are now available with one click and will be delivered right at your doorstep. I think it’s more expensive to have it shipped but I would rather pay than go through the hassle of going to NSO since I live in the South.

For online application, go here.

For payment, go here.

You will receive your document 3-9 working days after payment, depending on your address

Cost is at P315 per copy.

2. Certificate of No Marriage Records (CENOMAR) – Another walk in the park if you have not been married in the past. For online application, payment and delivery, refer to the links above. Cost is at P415 per copy. Fees are inclusive of processing, delivery and government taxes. To be safe, get this 6 months prior your wedding.

3. Marriage License – A Marriage License is different from a Marriage Contract. (I wish I’d known that back then!) You apply for a Marriage License so you will be granted permission to get married while the Contract gets signed during the ceremony which will then be submitted to NSO for certification. Your Church will take care of your Marriage Contract. The Marriage License is valid for 120 days so make sure to get it 4 months prior your wedding date.

Where to get it:

Both you and your partner should be present. Go to you or your groom’s municipal hall and get an application form from the local registry office.


– NSO Certified Birth Certificate

– Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR)

– Cedula

– 1×1 ID Picture for the groom and bride

There are instances when you still have to undergo a family planning seminar before you are granted a license. In our case, the city hall of Las Pinas honored our Pre-Cana Seminar Attendance Certificate in lieu of this. You will get your License after 10 working days.

Church Requirements (patterned from San Antonio De Padua, Silang Cavite):

1. Baptismal Certificate and Confirmation Certificate stamped as “For Marriage Purposes” – Certificates are valid for 6 months from the date of issue. These should be submitted to your Church 2 months prior the wedding.

2. Pre-Cana Seminar Certificate of Attendance – Ask your church if they will allow you to get a Pre-Cana Seminar elsewhere. There are a lot of parishes holding this seminar but I think the most famous is the Center for Family Ministries (CEFAM) Discovery Weekend. It’s a 2-day seminar which costs P6,000/couple. I would’ve loved to try this out but since my husband-to-be is an OFW, time really is of the essence. Know more about CEFAM through their website.

We had our seminar in San Agustin, Manila. It costs P1,500 for a half-day session (8am-12nn) with snacks. 🙂

3. Canonical Interview – This will be done by the parish priest. These are questions on your values, plans as a couple and as future parents. It lasts for around 10 minutes only since most of the time, other couples are lining up as well.

4. Marriage Banns – The church where you’ll be getting married will give you forms which you need to give to your respective parish. Lucky for us, we lived in the same village so our marriage banns were posted in the same parish. The banns will be up for 3 consecutive Sundays. The banns serve as a community announcement to make sure that nobody comes unannounced at your wedding and ask the priest to stop the ceremony. Haha! 🙂 After this, you will get a certificate from your parish as proof that the banns have been posted. You need to give this to your wedding church after.

5. Certificate of Registration. Authority to Solemnize – This is applicable if you will bring your own priest to officiate your wedding ceremony. This basically grants the priest the authority to wed couples. Check its validity since this document has an expiration too.Make sure that it is beyond your wedding date.

6. Confession – To be done ideally a week before your wedding. Check with your Church if they allow you to get a confession elsewhere.

For requirements alone, the couple needs to shell out this much:

Birth Certificate (for groom and bride) 630.00
CENOMAR (for groom and bride) 830.00
Cedula 10.00
Marriage License Application Fee 100.00
Marriage License Fee 50.00
Baptismal and Confirmation Certificate (Bride) 100.00
Baptismal and Confirmation Certificate (Groom) 100.00
Pre-Cana Seminar 1,500.00
Marriage Banns 500.00
TOTAL 3,820.00

Now, you can get legally married! 🙂 Hooray!


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