Wedding Licence Details

(also info for US couples)


  • Marriage licences are purchased at Thunder Bay City Hall:
         The City Clerk's Office
         Third Floor, City Hall
         500 Donald Street East
         Thunder Bay

  •  To get a marriage licence, you will require;
    The City's hours of operation are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday, Eastern Standard Time. You should be there at least a half-hour before closing time to get the licence that day. Staff will do it while you wait, if everything is in order; it usually will take 20-30 minutes.

    1. the application form for a marriage licence, completed and signed by both applicants
    2. two pieces of identification each; at least one should be photo identification
    3. $100 in Canadian funds. This can be paid in cash or by debit card. No cheques or credit cards are accepted.
    4. A person whose previous marriage has been dissolved or annulled in Canada will also require the original or court-certified copy of the final decree, judgment or certificate of divorce dissolving or annulling the marriage. (If a marriage has been dissolved outside of Canada, there are other requirements, listed below under 'Authorization'.)
  • City Hall is closed for all statutory holidays and over the Christmas holidays between Christmas and the New Year. US citizens - remember that Canada has some statutory holidays that are different than the American holidays, so it is wise to check if you're not sure.

  • There are no requirements regarding residency, pre-marital blood tests, or medical certificates. There is no waiting period. A marriage licence can be issued on the same day that the marriage will take place.

  • A marriage licence is valid for use anywhere in Ontario. The licence expires three months after the date of issue.

  • You will require two witnesses. The witnesses do not necessarily have to be 18 years or older, but they must be old enough and mature enough to understand what is occurring and what they are being asked to do. (If just the two of you are traveling to Thunder Bay and you will require witnesses, please let us know in advance so that we can provide them.)

  • You can download a copy of the marriage licence application form from the following website:

    Click on the Search tab at the bottom of the page. Type in 'marriage licence application'. Choose 1. Forms - Marriage, then click on Marriage Licence Application (11018).

  • Authorization:

    An applicant whose former marriage was dissolved or annulled in a jurisdiction other than Canada must obtain authorization from the Minister of Consumer and Business Services before a marriage licence may be issued. To obtain this authorization, the applicants or a lawyer representing them must submit the following documents:

    These documents must be submitted to:

    Office of the Registrar General
    P.O. Box 4600
    189 Red River Road
    Thunder Bay ON P7B 6L8

    Once all of this documentation has been submitted to the Office of the Registrar General, it will be reviewed and, if approved, you will be given a letter that authorizes the City Clerk's office to issue you a marriage licence. You must bring this letter with you when you get your marriage licence.

    As you can no doubt imagine, acquiring all of this documentation will take some time, and will add to the expense. Be prepared for it to take several months for you to get the letter of authorization, especially if you are working at a distance.

    If you wish, we can recommend several local lawyers who have successfully negotiated this process for other American couples.
    1. A completed marriage licence application signed by both applicants.
    2. An original or court-certified copy of the divorce decree or annulment (certified by the proper court officer in the jurisdiction in which the divorce/annulment was granted). If the decree is in a language other than English or French, include a translated copy together with an affidavit sworn by the translator.
    3. A Statement of Sole Responsibility for each divorce signed by both applicants. Blank statements are available from the same web page as the marriage licence application form (mentioned above).
    4. A legal opinion of an Ontario lawyer, addressed to both applicants, giving reasons why the divorce or annulment should be recognized in the Province of Ontario. A sample legal opinion letter can be obtained from the Office of the Registrar General by calling 1-807-343-7568. A sample letter will be faxed to your lawyer.

© 2017 Lakehead Unitarian Fellowship • 129 S. Algoma St. Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada P7B 3B7 • (807) 344-5980