Marriage Law of Nepal

What is marriage?

Marriage is the most important event of human life that is combining two persons. Generally, both male and female into one relation is known as marriage. Marriage is the way to arrange a marriage ceremony as per their culture, practice, and tradition.

Legal Definition

Marriage is a legal union of a couple male and female as spouses. The basic elements of a legal marriage are:

  • The legal ability to marrying each other of the parties,
  • Mutual and free consent of both parties,
  • Attained the minimum age for marriage, and
  • A marriage agreement as required by domestic law.

According to sec 67 of the National civil code, 2017, if a male and a female accept each other as a couple (husband and wife) through any event, ceremony, formal or other activities will be acknowledged as married.

Types of marriage in Nepal

Nepal has multi-cultural, multi-religious, and multi customary practices. In this regard, there are its own methods of the marriage system. There are different kinds for getting married such as Arrange marriage, Court marriage, Love marriage, Magi marriage, and other cultural marriage in the different community.

Mainly the Hindu people practice arranged marriage and it is regarded as one of the best ways to get married in Nepalese society, where the party’s family or parent or guardian will search the bride and groom for their adult child.

According to Nepalese law, the age of both boy and girl marriage is 20 years and above. When the children reached the legal age for marriage, their parents and relative started searching for the groom and bride.

Similarly, Court marriage also common practice in Nepal, both parties (persons) who attained the age of 20 years, can register the marriage in any District Court of Nepal and get a marriage certificate. Likewise, love marriage once will choose their life partner themselves.

Magi marriage is also another type of marriage in Nepal. When both boy and girl getting love each other, want to marry, but their family disagrees with their relationship. Then, in the last stage, parties will run away and get married.

What is the legal age of marriage in Nepal?

Different countries have differences in the marriageable age. As per sec. 70 (1) (d) of National Civil Code, 2017, if both boys and girls have attained twenty years of age, they can able for the marriage in Nepal.

How many wives can you have in Nepal?

In Nepali society, marriage is a cultural, social, emotional, and legal union between husband and wife. More than one marriage is regarded as illegal in Nepal. Polygamy and Bigamy are illegal in Nepal and also immoral behavior for the Nepalese society.

Therefore only one wife and one husband are allowed in Nepal. Such marriage practices are restricted and made punishable under the existing laws.

According to Code, unless the first wife/husband is not dissolved and has any terminal infectious venereal disease, incurable insane, childless, or becomes blind of both eyes and so on, any male cannot marry another girl/female during his life.

What is required for court marriage in Nepal?

Court marriage is a simple way of marriage; those who have not want to be married traditionally and aim to get married in legal method. For that purpose application must be submitted to any District Court of Nepal along with the required documents as given below;

  • Application of registration
  • Photocopy of Citizenship Certificate
  • Passport size photo of spouse/couple
  • Letter from the ward office of male and female stating he or she is either unmarried or divorcee

Addition for foreign citizen

  • Photocopy of Passport
  • Letter of the residing country that the foreign doesn’t have any criminal record,
  • No objection letter provided by the government authority of a foreign country or concerned embassy in Nepal.

Marriage Registration in Nepal

Marriage Registration can do through three different methods;

  • Marriage Registration from the Court,
  • Marriage Registration through Embassy or Consulate Office
  • Procedure for receiving the marriage certificate through ward office

Those couples who got married throughout the particular social/religious culture, also compulsory should be registered for legal validity.

They can submit the joint application at the ward office of their concern or permanent resident with evidence related to marriage and the ward office shall provide the marriage certificate.

Foreigners can get married in Nepal

A foreigner can marry a Nepali citizen according to law, the people residing at foreign can register the court marriage at the Embassy or Consulate Office.

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