Wedding Rituals – their traditions and customs - vary greatly between cultures, religions, social classes, Wedding traditions and customs vary greatly between cultures, ethnic groups, religions, countries, and social classes.
These culturally diverse customs, may take many forms, and are formalised by a wedding. The act of marriage usually creates legal obligations between the individuals involved. Almost all cultures that recognise marriage also identify adultery as a violation of the terms of marriage.
South African Marriages
The law varies from country to country and, in some countries, from area to area. We will concern ourselves here only with South African Law
Who May Solemnise the Marriage?
Civil marriages are currently solemnised at Churches with authorised Marriage Officers i.e. Pastors, etc. and also at the Offices of the Department of Home Affairs. Only Marriage Officers authorised in terms of Act No. 25 of 1961 to perform marriages may do so.
What is Your Preferred Mode of Marriage?
If you are planning to get married then the first thing you should do is ensure that you are allowed to marry and that you familiarise yourself with the legal consequences of a marriage. You need to ensure that you marriage will comply with all the legal requirements for a valid marriage. Further, unless a valid antenuptial contract has been entered into beforehand, marriages in South Africa automatically take the form of being in community of property. Thus, if you are not certain which mode of marriage would be right for you, it would be wise to seek the advice of legal counsel, i.e. make an appointment to consult with a Specialist Divorce and Family Law Attorney before you become married.
What Documents Should You Take With You?
There are documents which the couple must present to the Marriage Officer on the actual day of the Wedding. Below is a list of possible documentation that the couple are required to bring with them to the Ceremony: