Legal "Advice"

India’s Special Marriage Act

Today was supposed to be the day we would place our final signatures on the long-awaited marriage certificate. But, yet again, we are delayed (this time because someone died, so I shouldn’t be so harsh about it). A bank holiday was declared upon the death of former financial minister Surinder Singh – read more here but watch out for ad popups. Of course we found out that our local government office was closed the very moment we finally had everyone washed, dressed, and piled into the car, so instead we drove to the kothi and checked out the new tile and door installations.

Kothi is under construction

The Special Marriage Act was established in 1954 to allow inter-caste and inter-religion marriages for Indian citizens (FYI – that’s 13 years before the US legalized inter-racial marriages). Because I am not Sikh, we filed for our certificate under this act. It has been a long process considering we married March 14th (2.5 months ago). We haven’t been able to travel for our honeymoon yet *crying face emoji* or apply for Aman’s CR1 visa to the US.

We knew there would be 30 day waiting period while our Notice of Intended Marriage was posted (which I’ve gathered is so that anyone has time to object to our marriage…). We paid our fees, filled out forms verifying our residencies, proof of the completed religious ceremony, and police background checks. We met with the marriage officer to have our forms solemnized, and now we are told we have just one more signing left to do before we are official. Hopefully we can reschedule for next week.

If you are looking to apply for your own certificate under the Special Marriage Act, we found most of information from the India government site, but Aman is also good friends with lawyer – so that helps us out a lot. There is also general knowledge on requirements listed on Wikipedia.

Update 7/5/18

Signed, sealed, delivered – our marriage is officially registered with the government and we can safely leave the country and apply for aman’ Visa!

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