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How to apply for a Single Status Certificate in Sierra Leone. It is advisable to follow the guidelines that certain authorities deem necessary. Those wishing to marry overseas will need special documentation. First, couples will have to present a declaration that is processed by your local office where marriage documents are produced. This must be from the state where you live in Sierra Leone. On this statement will be recorded the fact that there has not be any marriage in recent years.
Due to the fact that these types of documents are sought for foreign involvement one will need the local or state registrars account or declaration to be authenticated to work abroad.
- Go to the Civil Registry office where marriages are registered.
- Present and submit required documents.
- Complete a form and declare.
- Pay the fee.
Required Documents to apply for a Single Status Certificate in Sierra Leone
- National identity card or Passport.
- Proof of address.
- If divorced, Decree Absolute.
- If widowed, Death Certificate of previous spouse (and Marriage Certificate).
- If your name has been changed by Deed Poll, proof is necessary.
- The relevant fee.
Office Locations & Contacts
Ministry of Local Government & Rural Development
Tel: (232) 22 226979/223241/226398/226387
Fax: (232) 22 227727
Ministry of Justice & Attorney General
Lamina Sankoh Street
Tel.: (232) 22 227444/225695/226891
Fax: (232) 22 229366/224940
Sierra Leone Embassies
Eligibility to apply for a Single Status Certificate in Sierra Leone
In order for non-nationals to marry in a foreign country you will most likely be required to produce legal documentation from your country of citizenship verifying single status and that you are free to marry. This is known as a ‘Certificate of No Impediment’, ‘Certificate de Coutume’, ‘Certificate of Nulla Osta’ or a ‘Certificate of Freedom to Marry’.
Instructions to apply for a Single Status Certificate in Sierra Leone
If you are planning to marry in another country, you may be required to obtain a Certificate of Non-Impediment. This document has many different names such as Declaration of Non-Impediment to Marry, Statutory Declaration of Single Status, Affidavit of Intended Marriage, Statement In-Lieu of Certificate of Non-Impediment to Marriage Abroad, Certificate de Coutume, a Certificate of No Impediment, Certificate of Nulla Osta, Certificate of Freedom to Marry or just free to marry.
Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage
This can be obtained from your local department of foreign affairs or your embassy in the country in which you are getting married.
Certificate of Single Status/Sworn Affidavit that you are free to marry
These are similar to a Certificate of No Impediment, but instead you have to swear you are single in front of a legal representative.
- Full Name
- Passport or ID number
- Place and Date of Birth
- Signature of the person who declares
- Signature of the witnesses
Need for the Document to apply for a Single Status Certificate in Sierra Leone
A Single Status Certificate also referred to as a No Marriage Affidavit, Certificate of Freedom to Marry or Certificate of No Impediment, is a sworn statement saying that you are eligible to marry.
Overseas marriage authorities often require further evidence that the party is free to marry. Such evidence may be a statement from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages that there is no record of the person having been previously married or a ‘Single Status Certificate’ or ‘No Records Result’.
Information which might help
Please also be aware that a standard Single Status Certificate or Certificate of No Impediment may be insufficient on its own to allow a marriage to take place in a foreign country. You may be required by the foreign authorities to comply with the following, so please ensure that you allow sufficient time for processing.
- Certificates may need to be translated.
- Certificates may need to be endorsed or exchanged for a locally acceptable version issued by your Embassy or Consulate in the country where you will marry.
- Certificates may need to be legalized i.e. stamped with an official stamp known as an Apostille.
- Certificates may require that witnesses swear an Affidavit stating that you are free to marry and that this is appended.
Other uses of the Document/Certificate
This document will most likely be required as a supporting document if you are getting married in a foreign country.
This document can also be required for employment in a foreign country.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation
Official Government of Sierra Leone Portal
Ministry of Health & Sanitation of Sierra Leone
The Bride & Groom to be married must provide from their country of Citizenship, individual Certificates of non impediment or Certificate of Single Status/Sworn Affidavit, as proof that they are both indeed single and eligible to marry. This is also called an affidavit of single status or negative statement of marriage. This document can be obtained at the Bureau of Vital statistics in their city they reside.
These certificates vary in the length of time they are valid for, which can sometimes only be a few months. Certain countries require that certificates be no older than 2 or 3 months at the time of your wedding. Therefore, it is important to check the requirements which apply to your circumstances and pay particular attention to timelines when you apply for a Certificate of No Impediment.