It is true that marriages are made in heaven but to make them work on earth few steps need to be taken. One such step is getting your marriage registered. It not only has an evidentiary value but also adds on to the security protecting the couple from any untoward situation that may arise in the future. There is a wide perception that marriage registration is not important. A very few people know that marriage registration was made mandatory as per the SC judgment, Seema Vs Ashwani Kumar (2006). But people ignore it thinking that once they get married as per the religious ceremonies, what is the point of getting the marriage registered. They fail to understand the importance of getting the marriage registered. Here are some of the benefits of getting your marriage registered-
- It helps in getting your visa or changing your name in the passport.
- It helps in getting a work permit in case the other spouse lives abroad.
- It helps in the case of property disputes.
- It enables the couple to take joint loan, open a joint account.
- It helps the spouse to get the family pension, bank account details, life insurance in case the spouse unfortunately passes away without making the other a nominee.
- If the marriage fails to work and the couple goes for a divorce, marriage certificate holds a key authority in court.
One of the biggest reasons why people fail to register their marriage is that they have lack of awareness as well as they find the procedure very lengthy and cumbersome. In such cases a lawyer always comes handy who can ease down the process and can also help you with the procedure and necessary information. 5 important ways in which an advocate can help in registration of marriage includes-
- Law Applicable on Registration
India is a land of religions and each religion has its own personal ethics and laws. For example, Hindu Law is applicable on Hindus while Parsi law is applicable on Parsis. A Hindu marriage gets registered under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. A lawyer can help you with the applicable law. This can be illustrated with the example of Raj and Fatima. Raj, a Hindu wants to get married to Fatima who is a Muslim by religion. Their marriage, being an inter caste will get registered under the Special Marriage Act. So, this knowledge can be provided to you by your lawyer. Further, many states such as Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, etc. have their own laws on marriage registration. Hence, your lawyer can help you in understanding the applicable laws.
- Jurisdiction for Registration (where to register the marriage)
An advocate can also help you with the place of registration. Marriage gets registered by the marriage registrar depending upon his jurisdiction. Different religions have different laws applicable on them along with different jurisdictions. For example, a Hindu Marriage can be registered under the registrar in whose jurisdiction the marriage was performed or where the bride or the groom resides. A lawyer can advise you on this that as per the applicable law, where you can register your marriage.
- Documents required and the procedure for registration
An advocate can help you with the documents required for the registration process. The document must be valid and attested by a gazetted officer. He can further reduce the stress and can explain you the registration process in a step by step manner. For example, first you need to fill the form, arrange documents, then take an appointment from the registrar, etc. This will help in reducing your burden and time.
- Preparing the affidavit
An attested affidavit is required to be submitted by the couple certifying the mental and marital status of the couple. An advocate can help you in preparing this affidavit. This affidavit is required by the registrar to ensure that the marriage is not performed forcefully and the couple is of the legal age to get married.
- Further claims and Deliberations
If any claim or deliberations is raised by the office of the registrar, then an advocate can help you in this scenario. He can file an appeal on your behalf and make the arguments.
So, even though it is not mandatory to hire a lawyer for registering the marriage, having someone from legal background reduces the effort and eliminates the possibility of error. He can help in understanding the legal jargon which is difficult for a layman to understand. It also helps in reducing the time involved and helps you in getting your certificate as soon as possible. It is important that one should not avoid the registration of marriage as it has a lot of benefits and security at risk. However, one can reduce this burdensome process by simply hiring a lawyer.