Abridged vs Unabridged Marriage Certificate
I am sure as a young person eager to get married, marriage may be the first thing on your mind, and you hardly pay attention to the kind of marriage certificate you are getting on registration. However, if you happen to be in South Africa, this is of considerable importance as there are two types of marriage certificates being issued to married couples namely abridged marriage certificate and an unabridged marriage certificate. Though, both types of certificates are legally valid and fulfill their purpose as and when required, there are some differences in abridged and unabridged marriage certificates that you ought to know before hand to ask for the certificate that is closer to your requirements.
Abridged Marriage Certificate
Abridged marriage certificate is a default certificate that is available to couples marrying in South Africa soon after their marriage, and is a valid certificate that fulfills almost all requirements for the couple in South Africa. This is a handwritten document and is issued by a registered marriage officer of the Department of Home Affairs of South Africa. There is no charge for an abridged marriage certificate.
Unabridged Marriage Certificate
Unabridged version of marriage certificate is usually required by couples having a foreign origin. It is also referred to as a full marriage certificate, and is more formal in all respects than an abridged marriage certificate. It contains many more details than abridged version and is issued by department of home affairs upon payment of prescribed fee and takes much longer to obtain than abridged marriage certificate. An unabridged marriage certificate is a must if you as a couple plan to travel abroad or are trying to immigrate to another country. If one of the spouses is not of South African origin, he or she needs an unabridged marriage certificate to prove the marriage conclusively in his or her country. An unabridged marriage certificate is the ultimate proof of your marriage and helpful in all circumstances. Thus, you would do well to apply for an unabridged marriage certificate after the marriage. This certificate takes 12 weeks to be issued and it is prudent to apply in time to avoid disappointment if you are trying to move abroad.
One thing that is different between the two types of marriage certificates is that unabridged version contains all details of a person’s marital record prior to a marriage whether he is a spinster, divorcee, widower, and so on. On the other hand, abridged version has details pertaining to the present marriage only along with ID proof of the individuals marrying.
What is the difference between Abridged and Unabridged Marriage Certificate?
• For a normal couple living in South Africa, abridged version of marriage certificate is sufficient in itself as it is a valid document for all circumstances
• However, if one of the spouses is a foreigner, he or she needs to get registered the marriage in his country of origin for which unabridged certificate of marriage is needed.
• If South African couple intends to migrate or travel to any other country, they require keeping an unabridged marriage certificate with them.
• Abridged marriage certificate is one that is issued by default and no charge is taken for it
• Unabridged marriage certificate is harder to get, and takes a few weeks to be delivered upon payment of prescribed fee.