Book Your Marriage Licence Appointment 

Wedding Season is here. It is recommended that you book an appointment to avoid long lines and wait times.

When your marriage licence application is completed and ready to be submitted, it must be presented to the Office of the City Clerk, First Floor, City Hall, 500 E. Donald St.  If you have specific questions about the marriage license application process, please call the Office of the City Clerk at 807-625-2230.

You and your partner can submit the application together; however, attendance for both applicants is not necessary. One of you can bring the required documents (i.e., the IDs for both applicants and the completed application form, including signatures).

Before you arrive at City Hall to submit the application, please see the list below, and make sure you bring the correct pieces of ID with you.

Marriage licences are issued Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., excluding holidays. Applicants are encouraged to be at the Office of the City Clerk by 4:00 p.m. in order to allow thirty (30) minutes to process the application. If you arrive at the office by 4:00 p.m. please make sure you are arriving with a filled out application.

Book a marriage licence appointment online or call 625-2230 ext 9

City of Thunder Bay marriage licence requirements

1. When completing the application, state all given names. Both persons must complete the marriage licence application form in ink and sign the form.

2. Both persons must be at least 18 years of age. The consent of parents or guardians must be obtained before the licence can be issued to anyone who is 16 or 17 years of age.

3. The Province of Ontario requires that TWO of the following original valid pieces of ID must be provided by each applicant when applying for a marriage licence. Both pieces of ID must have a name and birthdate. One piece of ID must have a photo. Names on both pieces MUST match. Photocopies or photos of ID will not be accepted.

Primary Identification

  • Birth Certificate
  • Current Passport
  • Canadian Citizenship Card
  • Landed Immigrant papers
  • Legal Change of Name Certificate

Secondary Identification

  • Valid Driver's License
  • Valid Ontario Photo ID card
  • Certificate of Indian Status (Status Card)
  • Permanent Residency Card
  • Canadian Armed Forces 
  • Firearms License
  • Nexus Card

*Please note: Health cards, S.I.N cards and expired ID's are NOT accepted as proof of identification.

3.1 If you were born in Ontario and do not have an original birth certificate, one can be obtained from the Province of Ontario, 1-800-461-2156. Application forms are available online at or from City Hall. They are also available at any Service Ontario Office.

3.2 If you were born outside of Ontario and do not have an original birth certificate or current passport, you must apply to your Province of Birth for an original birth certificate, or if you were born outside of Canada, you must provide the City with a current Passport, or a Canadian Citizenship Card, or Landed Immigrant papers.

3.3 If you were born outside of Canada and your birth certificate or current passport is in a foreign language, a written translation of the birth certificate or current passport is required. This can be done by a person who is fluent in the language and is not related to either person applying for the marriage licence, or by a company that provides translation services. The person providing the translation must complete an Affidavit that is sworn before a Commissioner of Oaths or Notary Public proving the authenticity of the translation.

4. If you have been divorced within Canada, the original Certificate of Divorce is required. (A decree absolute will be accepted prior to 1985 only). A Court-certified copy of the certificate will also be accepted. The Certificate of Divorce will be returned to the applicant once the marriage license issuer has reviewed it.

5. If you have been divorced outside of Canada, please see below form for a list of required documents.


Currently, the marriage licence fee: $158 - we accept cash, Interac™, Visa™, Mastercard™, money order, or certified cheque.

Divorce outside of country

If you've been divorced outside of the country, read the instructions and fill out the Divorce Outside of Country Forms.

6. If you have been widowed, the City does not require proof of death of your former spouse.

7. If you are getting married in a rural municipality, you must indicate on the application the place, township and/or county where the ceremony is taking place.

8. The marriage licence is valid anywhere in Ontario for three (3) months/90 days from the date the marriage licence was issued.

Civil marriage services

The City of Thunder Bay offers civil marriage ceremonies in Council Chambers or at a special venue of your choice. There is a fee of $330 plus HST for this service. On your special day, consider a Community Centre or, seasonally, the Chippewa Park Pavilion for your reception. The City's many beautiful parks or the Centennial Botanical Conservatory are ideal for wedding photos. Please contact 625-2941 if you are interested in booking a City venue.

NOTE: No refund will be issued if the ceremony is cancelled within 30 days or less prior to the scheduled date, or the applicant(s) do not show up for the ceremony. One date move is allowed if agreed upon by the Marriage Commissioner and applicants. NO exceptions will be made to this policy.

The City of Thunder Bay provides officiants to perform and preside over your wedding ceremony, upon request, seven days per week. Each officiant is dedicated to providing every couple with a professional and individualized experience. The weddings can be as simple as two witnesses at City Hall and as complex as 250 guests with twelve attendants in a formal wedding with a planning meeting, and a rehearsal – and everything in between.

The location of the ceremony is your choice and could include weddings at your home or cottage, at City Hall, in a park, or more formal weddings at hotels or halls, golf courses and clubs.

Your officiant will provide you with sample ceremonies; guide you through the steps involved in preparing for your ceremony; meet with you prior to your wedding to discuss the details of your ceremony; and handle all the paperwork required in a timely manner.

These professionals are specifically trained to ensure that your wedding includes every declaration that is required to make your marriage legal and recognized by the Province of Ontario and other jurisdictions. They will happily marry any couple who is eligible to be married in Ontario. They are the only individuals who are certified by the City of Thunder Bay and the Province of Ontario to perform civil ceremonies within the region.

Civil marriage commissioner profiles

Trish McGowan

Trish McGowan - Civil Marriage CommissionerTrish McGowan has performed over 1200 weddings in the past twenty years in the Thunder Bay area. During her years as a marriage officiant, she has provided couples with the one-on-one attention they need when they are planning their special day.

Trish’s thirteen years with the City doing civil ceremonies is complemented by nine years as a lay chaplain. Her weddings are as simple or as rich and meaningful as a couple wishes; she will tailor the ceremony to reflect who the couple is and what they want, and will include vows, readings or rituals that speak to the individuals involved.

Trish is professional, experienced, approachable, warm, and patient, and has a calming influence that couples appreciate. She will work with you to plan your special day and will provide the meaningful and well-run ceremony you desire.

(807) 623-4679                                  

Cell (807) 621-4254                           

Marsha Reinikka

Marsha Reinikka - Civil Marriage Commissioner Marsha Reinikka has been doing civil ceremonies for the City of Thunder Bay for thirteen years. During that time she has performed over 1000 wedding ceremonies. She also has extensive experience as a public speaker, a conference presenter and planner, and a university lecturer. She is confident and organized, and can take the stress out of the wedding preparation and day.

Marsha understands the importance of your special day and will work with you to make it the wedding of your dreams.

Marsha is professional, organized, personable, and approachable. From the simple to the complex, she can ensure your wedding has the meaning you desire and creates the memories you are hoping for.

Cell (807) 345-0048


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