(1) Any person, on payment of the prescribed fee, may enter a caveat with the Registrar against the issue of a certificate for the marriage of any person named in the caveat and notice of whose intended marriage has been given to the Registrar.
(2) A caveat entered under this section shall contain the name and place of residence of the person entering the caveat and the grounds of objection upon which the caveat is founded and shall be signed by the person entering the caveat.
20 Proceedings if caveat entered cite [+]
(1) If a caveat is entered in accordance with section 19 the Registrar shall not issue a certificate for the marriage against which the caveat has been entered unless-
(a) after enquiring into the matter of the said objection, he is satisfied that it ought not to prevent the issue of such certificate for the marriage; or
(b) the caveat is withdrawn by the person who entered it:
Provided that in cases of doubt it shall be lawful for the Registrar to refer the matter of any such caveat to the High Court which shall decide upon the same.
(2) Where the Registrar has refused to issue the certificate for marriage the person applying for the same shall have a right of appeal to the High Court which shall thereupon either confirm the refusal or direct the grant of the certificate for marriage.
(3) The High Court may require proof of the allegations contained in the caveat in a summary way and may hear evidence in support of and in opposition to the objection.
(4) The proceeding under this section shall be before a Judge in chambers.
(5) There shall be no appeal from a decision of a Judge under this section.
(6) If a caveat is entered in accordance with section 19, then, notwithstanding section 18, no fresh notice need be given and the parties may lawfully marry within three months from the date on which the Registrar issues the certificate for marriage.
(7) If the High Court declares the grounds of objections to be frivolous and such as ought not to prevent the issue of the certificate for marriage the person entering the caveat shall be liable for the costs of all proceedings relating thereto and for damages to be recovered by suit or action by the party against whose marriage such caveat was entered.
(1) The Chief Minister, upon proof being made to him by statutory declaration that there is no lawful impediment to the proposed marriage, and upon his being satisfied that the necessary consent, if any, to such marriage has been obtained, or that the consent has been dispensed with or given under section 12 may, if he shall think fit, dispense with the giving of notice, and with the issue of a certificate for marriage, and may grant his licence in the prescribed form, authorizing the solemnization of a marriage between the parties named in such licence.
(2) The Chief Minister may in his discretion grant a licence under this section authorizing the solemnization of a marriage although the female party to the marriage is under the age of eighteen years, but not in any case before her completion of sixteen years.
(3) The Chief Minister on being satisfied, by statutory declaration or otherwise as to him seems proper, that it is more convenient that a marriage under section 23 be solemnized in some place other than in the office of a Registrar may issue a licence in the prescribed form for such purpose.
(4) A licence authorizing a marriage to be solemnized in a place other than the office of a Registrar shall specify the place in which such marriage may be solemnized.
(5) If the marriage authorized by a licence under this section is not solemnized within one month from the date of the licence the licence shall become void.
(a) The Chief Minister may in writing delegate his power under this section to the Registrar General, Assistant Registrar General or Superintendent Registrar and may at any time revoke any such delegation.
(b) No delegation under paragraph (a) shall be deemed to divest the Chief Minister of his power under this section and he may, if he thinks fit, exercise such power notwithstanding any such delegation.
Solemnization of marriages
22 Solemnization of marriages cite [+]
(1) Every marriage under this Act shall be solemnized-
(a) in the office of a Registrar with open doors within the hours of six in the morning and seven in the evening;
(b) in such place other than in the office of a Registrar at such time as may be authorized by a valid licence issued under subsection 21(3); or
(c) in a church or temple or at any place of marriage in accordance with section 24 at any such time as may be permitted by the religion, custom or usage which the parties to the marriage or either of them profess or practise.
(2) A valid marriage may be solemnized under paragraph (1)(a) or (b) by a Registrar if a certificate for the marriage issued by the Registrar or Registrars concerned or a licence authorizing the marriage is delivered to him.
(3) A valid marriage may be solemnized under paragraph (1)(c) by an Assistant Registrar if he is satisfied by statutory declaration that-
(i) each of the parties is twenty-one years of age or over, or, if not, is a widower or widow, as the case may be, or
(ii) if either party is a minor who has not been previously married and the female party not under the age of sixteen years that the consent of the appropriate person mentioned in section 12 has been given in writing, or has been dispensed with, or has been given by a court in accordance with section 12;
(b) there is no lawful impediment to the marriage;
(c) neither of the parties to the intended marriage is married under any law, religion, custom or usage to any person other than the person with whom such marriage is proposed to be contracted; and
(d) in so far as the intended marriage is a Christian marriage and is to be solemnized in accordance with the rites, ceremonies or usages of a Christian religious denomination, the provisions of the canons of such religious denomination relating to the publication of banns or the giving notice of the intended marriage have been complied with or lawfully dispensed with in accordance with such canons.
(4) Every marriage purported to be solemnized in Malaysia shall be void unless a certificate for marriage or a licence has been issued by the Registrar or Chief Minister or a statutory declaration under subsection (3) has been delivered to the Registrar or Assistant Registrar, as the case may be.
(5) Every marriage shall be solemnized in the presence of at least two credible witnesses besides the Registrar.
(6) No marriage shall be solemnized unless the Registrar is satisfied that both the parties to the marriage freely consent to the marriage.
23 Solemnization of a civil marriage performed in office of a Registrar or elsewhere cite [+]
The Registrar acting under paragraph 22(1)(a) or (b) shall, after delivery to him of a certificate for the marriage issued by the Registrar or Registrars concerned or a licence authorizing the marriage, address the parties in the following words, either directly or through an interpreter:
"Do I understand that you A.B. and you C.D. are here of your own free will for the purpose of becoming man and wife?".
Upon their answering in the affirmative he shall proceed thus:
"Take notice then that, by this solemnization of your marriage before these witnesses here present according to law, you consent to be legally married for life to each other, and that this marriage cannot be dissolved during your lifetime except by a valid judgment of the court and if either of you shall, during the lifetime of the other, contract another marriage, howsoever and wheresoever solemnized, while this marriage subsists, you will thereby be committing an offence against the law.".
Next, the Registrar shall enquire of the parties, directly or through an interpreter, whether they know of any lawful impediment why they should not be joined together in matrimony. Upon their answering in the negative he shall enquire, directly or through an interpreter, of each of the parties whether he or she will take her or him to be his or her lawful wedded wife or husband. Upon their answering in the affirmative, the Registrar, the parties and the witnesses shall comply with section 25.
24 Solemnization of a marriage through religious ceremony, custom or usage cite [+]
(1) Where any clergyman or minister or priest of any church or temple is appointed by the Minister to act as Assistant Registrar of Marriages for any marriage district, such clergyman or minister or priest may after delivery to him of a statutory declaration under subsection 22(3) solemnize any marriage, if the parties to the marriage or either of them profess the religion to which the church or temple belong, in accordance with the rites and ceremonies of that religion.
(2) Where any person is appointed by the Minister to act as Assistant Registrar of Marriages for any marriage district such person may after delivery to him a statutory declaration under subsection 22(3) solemnize any marriage in accordance with the custom or usage which the parties to the marriage or either of them practise.
(3) An Assistant Registrar solemnizing a marriage under this section shall in some part of the ceremony remind the parties that either of them shall be incapable during the continuance of the marriage of contracting a valid marriage with any other person and if either of them shall marry during the continuance of the marriage he or she shall commit an offence.
(4) In this section-
"priest of a temple" includes any member of a committee of management or governing body of that temple and any committee member of any religious association;
"priest of a church" includes any officer or elder of the church.
25 Entry in marriage register cite [+]
(1) Immediately after the solemnization under section 23 or 24 is performed the Registrar shall enter the prescribed particulars in the marriage register.
(2) Such entry shall be attested by the parties to the marriage and by two witnesses other than the Registrar present at the solemnization of the marriage.
(3) Such entry shall then be signed by the Registrar solemnizing the marriage.
26 Solemnization of marriages in Malaysian Embassies, etc., abroad cite [+]
(1) A marriage may be solemnized by the Registrar appointed under subsection 28(4) at the Malaysian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate in any country which has not notified the Government of Malaysia of its objection to solemnization of marriages at such Malaysian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate:
Provided that the Registrar shall be satisfied-
(a) that one or both of the parties to the marriage is a citizen of Malaysia;
(b) that each party has the capacity to marry according to this Act;
(c) that, where either party is not domiciled in Malaysia, the proposed marriage, if solemnized, will be regarded as valid in the country where such party is domiciled; and
(d) that notice of the proposed marriage has been given at least twenty-one days and not more than three months previously, which notice has been published both at the office of the Registrar in the Embassy, High Commission or Consulate where the marriage is to be solemnized and at the Registry of the marriage district in Malaysia where each party to the marriage was last ordinarily resident and no caveat or notice of objection has been received.
(2) The procedure for solemnization and registration of marriages at a Malaysian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate shall be similar in all respects to that which applies to marriages solemnized and registered in Malaysia under this Act as if the Registrar appointed for a foreign country were a Registrar in Malaysia.
(3) A marriage solemnized under this section shall, for the purposes of this Act, be deemed to be a marriage solemnized in Malaysia, and subsection 7(2) shall apply mutatis mutandis in relation to any offence under this Act, in respect of such marriage.