From Tuesday 16 December 2014 couples in a civil partnership registered in Scotland can change their relationship to a marriage. There are two ways under this act for civil partners to change their relationship to a marriage. You can either use the administrative route established by these regulations or you can change through having a marriage ceremony. There is no obligation on civil partners to change their relationship to a marriage.
To change using the administrative route
- Make an appointment with your local registrar for the date on which you want the change to take place.
- Complete an application form to change your civil partnership into a marriage. The form must be signed in the presence of a Registrar and each other.
- You should bring your civil partnership extract and photographic evidence of ID for both of you, such as a passport or driving licence, with you when they come to change your civil partnership to a marriage.
- The Registrar will prepare an entry in the marriage register and you can then obtain a marriage certificate. There is a £10 charge for copy of the certificate.
If you are already in a civil partnership (registered before 16th December 2014), conversion to marriage is free of charge for the first year (until 16 December 2015) if you choose to use the administrative route
Having a marriage ceremony
If you choose to change your civil partnership to marriage by having a civil, religious or belief ceremony the normal procedures and fees for marriage apply – find out more about getting married in Argyll and Bute here
Under both routes described above the marriage will be recognised in law as having started on the date the civil partnership was registered.
The first couple to change their civil partnership to a marriage in Argyll and Bute were Jo and Fiona in Dunoon on Tuesday 16 December. They were absolutely delighted and both said that they thought the day would never come when they could be legally married.
Under the new law, couples were able to give notice of their intention to marry from 16th December onwards. From 1 March 2015 a 28 day notice period now applies. (You don't have to already to be in a civil partnership to choose to get married.)