6 things you need to know about getting married in Singapore
Couples the world over have been forced to make a choice amidst the COVID-19 pandemic: delay their wedding until safer times or proceed with a socially-distanced one. Things are no different in Singapore, where the pandemic also took a toll on weddings. Between January and July this year, there was a 23% fall in solemnizations, compared with the previous year. With that said, we may see more weddings in the last quarter of the year.
In this Pacific Prime Singapore article, we tell you 6 things you need to know about tying the knot during these unprecedented times. We explore how marriage solemnization works, where you can have a ceremony, how many people you can invite, and the additional measures you must adhere to, as well as how to protect you and your partner via health insurance after the wedding.
1. Preparing to get married: Check eligibility requirements
Congratulations! Your partner has proposed with that gorgeous engagement ring, which you can protect via jewellery insurance. Now, you just have to gather documents to prove your eligibility to get married in Singapore. Both you and your partner have to be over 21 (though there can be exceptions) and have to be free to marry.
For expats who are not permanent residents in Singapore, you’ll also need to show evidence of at least 15 days of continuous residence in the city-state. Depending on the type of visa you’re on or the conditions of your visit, you may also need to get additional approval for the marriage from the Ministry of Manpower.
2. Decide where you want to get married, then check if you need a Solemnizer and file a notice of marriage
A Solemnizer leads the bride and groom through their vows, checks the required documents, and signs the marriage certificate. If you plan to get married at the Registry of Marriages (ROM), then you don’t need a Solemnizer. But if you want to get married elsewhere, then you’ll need to contact a Solemnizer, confirm their availability, and get their signed consent.
It’s also necessary to file a notice of marriage. After filing a notice, you can get married anytime after 21 days to 12 months. Moreover, you will receive a notice number, which can be used to make important changes like solemnization date, time, place, witnesses, or Solemnizer. The next step is document verification and statutory declaration.
Note: If you’d like to conduct the solemnization and/or the document verification and statutory declaration via video link, you will need to meet certain eligibility criteria. However, this is not suitable for expats who have non-Singapore issued documents.
3. Go to the ROM on your appointment date for document verification and statutory declaration
When you file your notice of marriage, you will also receive filing instructions, which is a list of documents you need to bring with you to the ROM on an appointed date and time. This is a required step regardless of whether you’re planning to solemnize the marriage at the ROM, as the appointment is to get your documents verified and for you to make a statutory declaration.
After this step is complete, you’re one step closer to your big day. Before the day of the solemnization, make sure you have the necessary documents ready for both you and your partner, as well as your two chosen witnesses. This will ensure that your marriage is legally recognized in Singapore.
4. Planning the wedding: Venue and guest lists
The wedding is a time of celebration with friends and family – but unfortunately, you’ll have to limit the guest list due to concerns over the spread of COVID-19. As of October 3rd, 2020, these are the guest limits depending on where you’re planning to hold your marriage solemnization ceremony:
For solemnizations held at home or the ROM, up to 10 people can attend, excluding the Solemnizer and vendors (kept to a minimum). However, for solemnization held at other venues, couples can invite up to 100 people, excluding the Solemnizer and vendors (kept to a minimum). Invitees must be split into zones with no more than 50 people in a zone.
5. Safety measures to adhere to at the wedding
Face masks or face shields are a given for everyone at the wedding. But the couple is allowed to remove their face coverings during the exchanging of vows and rings, the kiss, and the march-in/out. What’s more, the couple must maintain a 2-meter distance from the rest of the attendees wherever face coverings have been removed.
In addition to face coverings, there are also other restrictions with regards to attendance control and contact tracing, the interaction between groups, and more. As this may severely restrict your ability to have a memorable wedding, it’s best to lower your expectations and focus more on the purpose of getting married.
6. Protect your new family by securing health insurance
Once you’ve settled into your new lives together, you may be thinking about starting a family down the line, in which case you should consider securing a maternity health insurance plan, as most of them come with a waiting period of at least 10 months. Being in possession of a maternity plan enables you to get the best care without the need for out-of-pocket expenses.
Whether it’s maternity health insurance, family health insurance, or any other health insurance plans, Pacific Prime Singapore has over two decades of experience helping people from all walks of life choose a suitable plan that meets their needs and budgets. Contact us today for a no-obligation quote and an impartial consultation!
Outside of work, Suphanida enjoys traveling to new places and immersing herself in different cultures.
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