Marriage is not just an emotional commitment; it also has legal obligations you must fulfill. For example, you must complete the correct documentation and ensure all legal documents are completed.

A marriage certificate in Ontario is one of these documents that will allow you to legally change your name. So, if you don’t know where to begin this process, you are in the right place.

Here is everything you need to know about how to get a marriage certificate in Ontario without needing a family lawyer.

What is a Marriage Certificate in Ontario?

An infographic on what is a marriage certificate in Ontario

A marriage certificate in Ontario is a document that contains all the details of a marriage in Ontario. If you have registered your marriage in Ontario, then you can obtain multiple copies of your marriage certificate online.

The certificate will come in use when changing your name, during divorce filings in Ontario, or just as a record of history. Please note that a solemnization record is different than a marriage certificate.

After your marriage ceremony, make sure that the officiant sends the signed and completed marriage to Service Ontario to register your marriage.

You can order the marriage certificate in Ontario six to eight weeks after this process.

Ordering a Marriage Certificate in Ontario: Who is Eligible?

You or your spouse can order the marriage certificate in Ontario. However, if you are not in the country or for other reasons, your children, parents, or any other authorized representative can apply on your behalf.

Please note that only the couple can apply for the certificate copy of marriage registration. The only circumstance where another person can apply is if the court orders it.

If one of the spouses is deceased, then legally authorized representatives can apply on behalf of the individual. These persons will be required to show proof of authorization to receive the marriage certificate.

Marriage License vs. Certificate in Ontario: The Main Difference between Marriage License and Certificate

A comparison infographic on marriage license vs marriage certificate

A marriage license is the piece of paper you have with you at your marriage ceremony that you sign with the witnesses and officiant. You need this document to legally get married in Ontario.

On the other hand, a marriage certificate in Ontario is the document you receive after your ceremony has taken place once you have submitted your marriage license in the relevant place.

Ontario Marriage Certificate Application Online

For the Ontario marriage certificate application, you will need the following:

  • Date of birth of both parties
  • Marriage must be registered in Ontario
  • Date of marriage
  • First and last names of both parties
  • And the name of the city, town, or reserve where the marriage took place

Once you have this information, you can fill out the Ontario marriage certificate application to begin the process as soon as possible.

How to Get a Marriage Certificate in Ontario?

There are two ways you can get a marriage certificate in Ontario. You can apply online, or you can download and complete the request for marriage certificate application and submit it in person.

Here is what you need to know about the ways you can get a marriage certificate in Ontario:

Get the Marriage Certificate In-Person

If you want to take this route, you can visit the following Service Ontario centers to submit your request for a marriage certificate application:

  • Ottawa: 110 Laurier Avenue West, 1st Floor, Ottawa, ON. K1P 1J1
  • Toronto: 47 Sheppard Avenue East, Unit 417, 4th Floor, Toronto, ON. M2N 5N1

Anyone looking for more information regarding application and processing can visit these locations and find out more.

Mail the Request for Marriage Certificate Applications

Another option you have is to complete the marriage certificate in Ontario applications and mail them to Service Ontario.

You will know once they receive your request, and then you have to wait to receive your certificate by mail.

How Long Does it Take to Get a Marriage Certificate in Ontario?

A question answer post on how long does it take to get marriage certificate in Ontario

Getting your marriage certificate in Ontario takes six to eight weeks. It might take longer if the department has a high volume of requests.

If you don’t receive your marriage certificate in Ontario within this timeframe, we recommend you get in touch with the offices and ask when you can expect to receive the certificate.

Can you Expedite the Marriage Certificate Process?

Yes, in certain cases, you can get the marriage certificate earlier than the standard delivery time. You will have to fill out the right applications, give a fee, and provide proof of urgency.

The following documents can be used as proof of urgency for marriage certificate in Ontario:

  1. Travel reservations such as an airline ticket or itinerary
  2. Letter from embassy or consulate confirming appointment
  3. A confirmation letter for an immigration hearing
  4. Medical emergency documents
  5. Wedding invitation where the applicant is a party
  6. Confirmation letter of new employment
  7. Other situations that the court might review

To submit this request, we recommend you download the application for the certificate and complete it. Then, you must also complete and submit a request for certificate services with the payment.

Make sure to attach the request with this application along with proof of urgency. If there are any supporting documents, be sure to attach those too and then submit payment to ensure your request is accepted.

How Much Does a Marriage Certificate Cost in Ontario?

An infographic on the cost of marriage certificate in Ontario

The cost of a marriage certificate in Ontario will depend on the service you choose. Both services are available online, and you will be redirected to a payment page after filling out the application.

  • Regular Service (Online Service): This will take fifteen business days, and delivery will be through Canada Post. The cost for this service is $15
  • Premium Service (Online Service): This will take five business days, and delivery will be through a courier service. The cost for this service is $45
  • Emergency Service (In-Person): This will also take five business days, and delivery will be through a courier service. The cost for this service is $45

For the emergency service, you will have to visit the Toronto location in person to begin your process. Be sure to take the proof of urgency with you to ensure a smooth application process.

Ontario Marriage Certificate Status Check

If you have been waiting for your Ontario marriage certificate, you can begin checking the status of the application one business day after submission.

You can conduct an Ontario marriage certificate status check online by entering:

  • The type of certificate you requested (in this case, it will be marriage)
  • Name and number of applicant
  • Name of the person to be listed on the marriage certificate
  • Order or file number
  • Date of event

On the other hand, if the status is not showing and you are unsure whether the application was submitted successfully, then you can directly contact ServiceOntario.


How do I get a marital status certificate in Ontario?

The fastest way to get a marital status certificate in Ontario is to apply online through ServiceOntario.

What documents are required for a marriage certificate in Canada?

A marriage license is one of the most important documents you will need for a marriage certificate in Canada. Without it, you will not receive the certificate.

Are you legally married without a marriage certificate in Ontario?

A valid marriage license is enough to deem you legally married in Ontario. A marriage certificate is for other purposes you might need during legal proceedings or to legally change your name.  

Is a marriage certificate the same as a marriage registration in Ontario?

Marriage certificate is not the same as marriage registration in Ontario. Before you can get a certificate, you will need to opt for marriage registration. Once your marriage is registered, then you can easily receive a certificate.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know how to get a marriage certificate in Ontario, you can apply today. If you need any assistance or legal advice regarding this or other family matters, then please feel free to get in touch with our family lawyer in Ontario.

Author Profile

Athena Narsingh
Athena Narsingh
Athena Narsingh is a trusted and knowledgeable lawyer in Scarborough. Her expertise spans real estate law, family law, adoptions and fertility law. A lawyer by profession and a humanitarian by heart, Athena Narsingh wants to help people become more familiar with the legal system and be well-informed to make important legal decisions.