Step 4: Obtain a Marriage Certificate
After you have had your marriage ceremony, you may need a marriage certificate. The certificate contains details of your marriage performed in Ontario and proves that a marriage has taken place. You may need a marriage certificate for a number of reasons, including changing your name.
Marriage certificates are issued by the Office of the Registrar General for the province of Ontario. You can order a marriage certificate through Service Ontario.
How to order a marriage certificate
- The easiest and fastest way to order a marriage certificate is online through Service Ontario.
- To order a marriage certificate by mail simply complete the form that was included with your marriage licence or download the form.
After the marriage ceremony, there are three options either spouse may consider in regards to retaining, assuming, or legally changing their last name.
Option 1: Continue to use their last name
- Under this course of action, the spouse who wishes to keep their current last name needs to take no action.
- Ontario law does not require a spouse to change their last name upon marriage.
Option 2: “Assume” the use of the spouse’s last name
- An assumed name is a name which a person uses or adopts.
- Upon marriage, a person may choose to “assume” the last name of their spouse and use it.
- To have your identification revised most government organizations, credit card firms, etc. will accept a copy of the marriage certificate issued by the Office of the Registrar General as proof of the marriage.
Option 3: Legally change his/her last name
- A legal name is the name by which the person is entitled to be recognized for the purposes of Ontario law.
- In this instance, a person will elect the option under the Change of Name Act, complete the appropriate forms and submit them to the Office of the Registrar General
- Staff at one of our offices can commission your change of name application free of charge