In short, the couple must get a marriage licence from any City Hall in Ontario which is valid for 90 days from the date of purchase. They can fill out an application for the marriage licence ahead of time, but they need the actual marriage licence to make the ceremony legally binding.
The Officiant will take the marriage licence and have the couple and their two witnesses sign it. At that moment, the couple is legally married. They will receive a certificate at that time called a Record of Solemnization. It is not a legally binding certificate, but simply a souvenir. Everyone will also sign the Officiant's Registrar's book as a record of the event.
The marriage licence goes to the Registrar General's Office in Thunder Bay, On. Any time after the day of the marriage, the couple may apply for their marriage certificate as proof of marriage. The certificate will not be available until the information from the licence is entered into the computer system, which can take 6-14 weeks depending on the season. If a marriage certificate is required urgently, the couple should follow the process to expedite the marriage process.
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