Matrimonial Causes and Marriage Law (Ireland) Amendment Act, 1870

Licences for marriages.

35. Every bishop of the said Church may, by writing under his hand, nominate persons to issue licences for marriages, and, by the same or other writings, define in and for what districts within the episcopal superintendence of such bishop such persons are respectively to issue the same, and in and for the district at the time of the passing of this Act known as the exempt jurisdiction of Newry and Morne the person at the time of the passing of this Act holding the office of vicar-general of the said exempt jurisdiction shall have power to issue licences for marriage, and shall continue so to do until the said district is included within the episcopal superintendence of some bishop of the said Church; and every such licence shall be held to authorize marriage in any churches and chapels situate within such districts respectively in which marriages may be solemnized under the provisions of this Act, and which shall be specified in such licences, whenever both of the parties shall be Protestant Episcopalians, and resident within such districts; and such licences shall be in the Form No. I. in the schedule (A.) to this Act annexed, or to the like effect; and for every such licence such person shall be entitled to have for his own benefit, of the party requiring the same, such fee, not exceeding the sum of five shillings, as may from time to time be appointed in that behalf by any general synod or convention of the bishops, clergy, and laity of the said Church; and in any case in which such person shall refuse to grant such licence, the person applying for the same shall be entitled to appeal to the bishop by whom such person shall have been so appointed, or his successor, who shall thereupon either confirm the refusal or direct the grant of the licence; and every person so appointed shall four times in every year, on such days as shall be appointed by the Registrar General, make a return to the Registrar General of every licence granted by him since his last return, and of the particulars stated concerning the parties: Provided always, that no such person shall grant any such licence until he shall have given security by his bond in the sum of one hundred pounds to the Registrar General for the due and faithful execution of his office.

A licence for marriage shall not be granted by any such person until seven days after notice shall have been given by one of the parties who shall have dwelt for not less than seven days then next preceding in the district named in that notice, under his or her hand, in the Form No. II. in the schedule (A.) to this Act annexed, or to the like effect, to such person, and such person shall forthwith send a copy of such notice to the clergymen officiating at the places of worship where the parties intending marriage have been in the habit of attending.

Every person so appointed shall file and keep with the records of his office every such notice, and shall also forthwith enter a true copy of such notice fairly in a book to be for that purpose furnished to him by the Registrar General, to be called “The Marriage Notice Book,” which book shall be open at all reasonable times, without fee, to all persons desirous of inspecting the same, and for entering every such notice the person so appointed shall be entitled to have such fee, not exceeding one shilling, as may be from time to time appointed in that behalf by any such general synod or convention as aforesaid over and above the accustomed fee for granting the licence.

Whenever a marriage shall not be had within three calendar months after the notice shall have been so given to the person so appointed as aforesaid, the notice, and any licence which may have been granted thereupon, shall be utterly void.

Before any licence for marriage shall be granted by any such person one of the parties intending marriage shall appear personally before him, and shall make and subscribe an oath or make affirmation, which oath or affirmation such person is hereby authorized to administer, that he or she believeth that there is not any impediment of kindred or alliance or other lawful hindrance to the said marriage and that one of the said parties hath for the space of fourteen days immediately before the day of the grant of such licence had his or her usual place of abode within the district attached in manner herein provided, for the purpose of celebration of marriages, to the church or chapel in which such marriage is to be solemnized, and that they are both of the full age of twenty-one years, or, when either of the parties shall be under the age of twenty-one years, that the consent of the person or persons whose consent to such marriage is required by law has been obtained thereto, or that there is no person having authority to give such consent, or that such person is a widower or widow, as the case may be.