Civil Partnerships

Registering a civil partnership in Scotland

By law both parties to a proposed civil partnership are required to submit notice forms to the registrar of the district in which the civil partnership is to take place informing him of their intention to register a civil partnership.

Forms for giving notice can be obtained from any registrar of births etc. in Scotland or from the General Register Office for Scotland Website.

Notice must be given in the three-month period prior to the date of the intended civil partnership and not later than 15 days before that date.

Who can register a civil partnership in Scotland?

Any two persons, regardless of where they live, can register a civil partnership in Scotland, provided that both parties:

  • are at least 16 years of age on the day they wish to register their civil partnership
  • are not related to one another in a way which would prevent their registering their civil partnership
  • are unmarried or not already registered as a civil partner (any person who has already been married or registered as a civil partner must produce documentary evidence that the previous marriage or civil partnership registration has been ended by death, divorce, annulment or dissolution)
  • are of the same sex
  • are capable of understanding the nature of a civil partnership and of validly consenting to its formation.

Where to register a civil partnership

A civil partnership may be registered only by a registrar or an assistant registrar who has been authorised by the Registrar General and may take place in a registration office or at a venue/place approved by the local authority for that purpose.

The registration of civil partnerships in East Dunbartonshire can take place in the Antonine Suite at Bearsden, the Lennox Suite in Kirkintilloch and at the listed approved venues, refer to Marriage Ceremonies.

How and when to give notice

Civil partnership notice forms and information about fees can be obtained from any Registrar of Births etc. in Scotland. In most cases you can get the address of your local registrar from the telephone directory.

Each of you must complete and submit a civil partnership notice, along with the required documents and appropriate fee, to the Registrar for the district in which the civil partnership is to be registered.

The notices must be submitted early enough to enable the Registrar to satisfy himself that you are free to register a civil partnership. Normally notices should be submitted about four weeks before the civil partnership registration, but if either of you has been married or in a civil partnership before, the notices should ideally be with the Registrar six weeks beforehand. The minimum period is 15 days before the date of the proposed civil partnership registration, but if you leave things as late as this you could be faced with the need to postpone your civil partnership registration.

Only in exceptional circumstances will the Registrar General authorise a civil partnership to take place if 15 days' notice has not been given.

Documents required

When giving or sending the civil partnership notice forms to the registrar each of you must supply the following:

  • your birth certificate
  • if you have been married or in a registered civil partnership before and the marriage or civil partnership has been dissolved or annulled, a decree of divorce or dissolution or annulment or a certified copy decree. A decree of divorce or dissolution granted outwith Scotland must be absolute or final – a decree nisi is not acceptable.
  • if your spouse or civil partner is deceased, the death certificate of your former spouse or civil partner.
  • if your domicile is abroad, a certificate of no impediment issued by the competent authority to the effect you are free to enter into a Civil Partnership.
  • if any of these documents are in a language other than English, a certified translation in English must also be provided.

Do not delay giving notice simply because you are waiting for any of the above documents.

All documents must be produced to the registrar prior to the date of the Civil Partnership.

If you are subject to immigration controls you may have to provide additional documentation to that outlined above. If you require further clarification you should consult your local registrar.