Marriages and co-habitation
Marriage is primarily a civil institution. The Marriage Act defines this recognised form of joint habitation, stating who may marry and what conditions are to be set for marrying. Marriage also has specific legal effects. There is no comprehensive legislation on co-habiting partners in Iceland and the legal effects of co-habiting are not the same as for marriage. Persons who share the same domicile and are not married or do not have an unknown marital status can register as co-habiting partners with Registers Iceland.
The principal tasks of the Ministry of Justice in this area are formulating policy and drafting legislation and regulations; resolving appeals against rulings by District Commissioners; international co-operation and providing general guidance.
Marriage in Iceland
According to the Icelandic Laws in Respect of Marriage No. 31 of April 14th, 1993 examination of impediments to marriage shall be performed by persons empowered to perform marriage ceremonies. District commissioners and their law-trained deputies shall, however, perform the marriage eligibility inquiry if one or both of the marriage applicants are not domiciled in Iceland. The marriage eligibility inquiry shall take pace in the administrative district of the home of either person to be married. In case neither person to be married has legal residence in Iceland, the examination shall be performed in the administrative district where either is staying. No fee shall be charged for issuing a marriage license.
Icelanders that intend to marry in other countries can request a statement from the Westman Islands District Commissioner that there are now obstacles to the marriage according to Icelandic laws. A certificate of marital status from Registers Iceland must accompany an application.
Information on the website of District Commissioners (in Icelandic): Gifting erlendis.