A marriage certificate is the official proof that two people have undertaken a marriage ceremony. In many countries, this document serves a dual purpose of granting permission for a marriage to take place and then recording the fact that it has indeed done so. A marriage certificate typically contains the following details: the full names of the bride and groom, that of the official or civil celebrant who performs the marriage ceremony, those of at least two witnesses, the signatures of all the aforementioned individuals, and the date of the ceremony. Other details, such as the place of the marriage ceremony and the previous marital status of the bride and groom, may also be included in the certificate.
Marriage certificates are typically used on occasions where proof of the marriage between two persons is required. Examples include applying for immigration, social welfare benefits or joint bank accounts as a spouse and claiming the life insurance of a spouse, just to name a few. Because of their important legal status, marriage certificates need to be translated clearly, precisely and free of error. It is recommended that only certified translators are appointed to translate marriage certificates.