Parliament passed new legislation facilitate remote marriage solemnisations on 5 May 2020.
Under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures for Solemnisation and Registration of Marriages) Bill, civil and Muslim marriage solemnisations as well as registrations can be conducted remotely during the COVID-19 period.
Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee said in Parliament that with the temporary measures in place, there would be no need for the couple, witnesses, wali as well as the licensed solemniser, kadi or naib kadi to be physically present at the solemnisation venue.
He added that some key processes related to marriage which needs to be done in person, may be done via video link and be equally valid under the law.
He also pointed out that there will be safeguards in place to ensure that only legitimate marriages are solemnised and registered through the video link.
For the solemnisation, the couple, witnesses and the wali for Muslim marriages must be physically present in Singapore.
Under the new law, for civil marriages, couples will also have 12 months to get married after filing a notice of marriage, instead of the current three months. “We hope that the extension of the validity of the marriage licence will allow couples greater flexibility in planning their marriage solemnisation date as well as reduce the administrative burden,” said Mr Lee.
Mr Lee emphasised that these measures will apply and last until the Covid-19 situation improves. “It is important during these challenging times that we ensure that Singaporeans can continue with their lives, especially for key life events like marriage,” he reiterated.
Image from Minister Desmond Lee’s Facebook