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Court Marriage or Civil Marriage in Pakistan: Requirements & Procedure

Court Marriage or Civil Marriage in Pakistan - Requirements & Procedure

Court Marriage or Civil Marriage: Requirements and Procedure for Court marriage & civil marriage defined in detail. A court marriage is not solemnized in court. The words court marriage and civil marriage mean a marriage that is solemnized under the fundamental constitutional rights and law of the land.

There are two words used for love marriages in Pakistan, and these are “civil marriage” and “court marriage”.

The word court marriage means a marriage that is solemnized under the basic constitutional human rights and law of the land. While the meaning of Civil Marriage is a legal contract or agreement. 

Marriage Forms the Foundation of the Family

Marriage is a social institution that forms the foundation of the family. It is considered as a contract between two parties who form an alliance for living together for the rest of their lives with certain rules and regulations, rights, and duties to each other that are recognized by law.

Family Laws for Marriages in Pakistan

In Pakistan, there are many laws regarding court marriage such as the Muslim Family Law ordinance 1961, Foreigner’s act 1946, Christian Marriage Act 1872,  etc. For solemnizing your court marriage, you have to follow some above-mentioned laws according to your religion and culture, but there must be at least one party involved in this court marriage must be Pakistani citizen according to Constitution 1973.

Court Marriage in Islamabad, Karachi Pakistan

Court Marriage Procedure in Pakistan

The court marriage procedure in Pakistan is different from a simple marriage conducted at home, where a Nikah Khawan/Qazi/Molvi solemnize the Nikah in presence of many family members and friends. A simple nikah requires the presence of two witnesses and after registration, the couple receives a Nikahnama which is a formal legal document. The court marriage procedure in Pakistan, on the other hand, involves some  more steps and additional paperwork. A lawyer plays an important part in this procedure because he or she will be able to guide you through each step and make sure you fulfill all requirements.

The court marriage procedure in Pakistan can be divided into two simple steps:

  • Firstly, the bride must sign her affidavit of free will stating that she is an adult and free to marry without any cohesion or compulsion. This affidavit should be duly notarized by the relevant authorities. Normally, Family Lawyers guide for the affidavit of free will.
  • Secondly, after receiving her affidavit, the lawyer will call the registered Nikah Registrar or Nikah Khawan for solemnizing the Nikah. If the couple or the man who wants to marry, is not a Muslim, then he will call a Priest, Pastor or Pandit, as per the religion of the couple.

Court marriages in Pakistan are more popular than ever before, there are several reasons for this

Court marriages in Pakistan are more popular than ever before, there are several reasons for this. These include:

  • Parents’ involvement – If the parents of both families oppose the marriage it is difficult to make arrangements and go through a traditional system. Therefore court marriage has proved to be a viable option.
  • Breaking away from the traditional marriage system – Some people just want to break away from the inherent restrictions or complications associated with a traditional marriage system. They just want to have a simple, hassle-free, inexpensive ceremony without all the usual ritualistic and cultural ceremonies attached to traditional marriages. This is also an age-old tradition and continues to date, especially in rural areas where women are expected to remain unmarried because of certain social rules or customs, therefore they opt for court marriages as an easy solution.
  • Rejection of traditional marriage system – Modern-day thinking has led many people towards rejecting the whole idea of a ‘traditional’ marriage system, therefore, opting for Court Marriage instead which does not require any religious rites or rituals and is considered more legal than religious marriages under Pakistani family law.
  • Inability to meet costs of traditional marriage system – As mentioned earlier some people do not have sufficient funds required for arranging all the procedures and desired ceremonies required by a traditional Pakistani wedding, therefore, opting for Court Marriage instead which can be done at minimal costs (as compared to a Traditional wedding).

The main reason for court marriage in Pakistan is the parents' involvement

One of the main reasons for court marriage in Pakistan is parents’ involvement, in order to get married both bride and groom must have proper permission from their parents, one of the grooms who want to do court marriage has to give proof of her father or guardian’s permission.

Pakistani people are very traditional and they follow all the rules and regulations properly, that is why parents play a very important role in all kinds of decisions as this will help them out to make sure that the marriage will be done with harmony and peace. Written proof from both parties is important to conduct any type of nikah or court marriage procedure. In case either party gets involved on their own it may cause problems later in life after getting married so it’s better to avoid such things. If parents is not willing to give their consent then there are chances that court marriage will be stopped by law immediately.

If you want to do a court marriage without your parents' permission, talk to our Court Marriage Expert Lawyer

You can do court marriage without your parents’ permission, and you don’t need any approval from your parents. But if you are a minor (under 18) then you have to prove that you are adult enough to get married.

You have to prove that you are a Pakistani citizen and ready for court marriage without your parents’ permission. You might be asked for your CNIC number or NICOP (National Identity Card of Overseas Pakistanis). If you cannot provide a copy of CNIC or NICOP then any other document, such as B’ Form, Board’s Matriculation certificate in original should be with you at the time of the proceeding.

If either party is not related to the other one, then it is not necessary to tell anybody about this, as there is no law that says that parents have the right to know about their son/daughter’s decision of getting married by himself/herself.

In Pakistan, at least one of the parties involved in court marriage must be a Pakistani citizen

In Pakistan at least one of the parties involved in court marriage must be a Pakistani citizen. Any male or female who is not a Muslim can get married under the law of Pakistan. If you are not a citizen of Pakistan then you cannot get married in Pakistan, however, if you are not a citizen of Pakistan but will like to marry a Pakistani citizen under the law then it can be done.

In Court Marriage, in Pakistan, only Muslim males and females, or Muslim males and non-Muslim females can marry each other but they must not be within prohibited degrees of relationship or affinity

Prohibited degrees of relationship or affinity under section 4(b) or (c) of Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act,1937

In Court Marriage, in Pakistan, only Muslim males and females or Muslim males and non-Muslim females can marry each other but they must not be within prohibited degrees of relationship or affinity under section 4(b) or (c) of Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act,1937, if such party is related then no such marriage will be valid until after the expiry of the period prescribed by law for Iddat and unless the conditions required by law for the consummation of the second marriage have been fulfilled and certificate therefor has been issued by an authorized medical practitioner.

What Are The Shari'a Requirements For Nikah during Court Marriage?

A valid nikah is a contract. Hence, the contracting parties must be competent, i.e., they must be of sound mind and have attained the age of puberty. They must also consent to the marriage, or else it is not a binding contract.

The consent requirement has been defined as follows by the Federal Shariat Court:

“Consent means that there should be a real purpose on the part of both bride and bridegroom to enter into matrimony and not merely for namesake.”

For performing a valid Nikkah you need to pay heed to these actions:

  • The wali (female party’s father or elder brother or paternal uncle who can perform as her representative) needs to be present at the time of Nikkah. (As per Hanafi Fiqh, Wali is not required). In absence of her Wali, she has to declare herself a sui juris adult who wants to marry with her free will and consent and without her parent’s intention.
  • Two witnesses need to be present at the time of Nikkah.
  • The bride’s consent is mandatory for proceeding with the marriage ceremony.

Can Nikah For Court Marriage Be Done Over The Phone?

If you are interested in court marriage, then you should have a clear idea about the legal aspect of court marriage in Pakistan. This knowledge will help you get married to the court without any hassle. I am going to tell you about the laws governing court marriage and how can it be done in Pakistan.

The question that whether Nikah can be done over the phone is often asked by people who want to perform a court marriage in Pakistan. The answer is yes, it is possible to do nikah even over the phone, but there are certain conditions that make it a valid procedure according to law.

For performing a court marriage, one has to do nikah first, which is a religious procedure where two witnesses are required. This means if you want your nikah ceremony performed over the phone, then both parties must be present at their respective ends with two witnesses each for witnessing their agreement in front of Allah SWT by saying “Qubool Hai” (I accept).

Online Marriage in 2022

Can I Do Nikah For Court Marriage, Without Getting it Registered?

A nikah is a sacred act, so the nikah performed without registration is still valid as per Islamic Sharia, but not valid as per the law of Pakistan. But unregistered nikah has some serious consequences and problems.

For a valid nikah, you need to follow all the rules of nikah in Pakistan. After performing the Nikkah ceremony, there are some rules and regulations that must be followed. You can register your Nikkah, but this important step will save you from many problems in the future.