Coronavirus: UAE couples can now get married online as lockdown prevents ceremonies

A woman walks past a wedding dress on display at The Bride Show in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The event, for the wedding industry, is held for four days in Dubai. (Reuters)

Couples in the United Arab Emirates can now get married via online video conference after the Ministry of Justice launched a digital marriage service on Sunday, following a temporary ban on weddings in person in line with restrictions on movement aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus.

According to the announcement by the ministry, online wedding ceremonies will be conducted via video conference with a marriage registrar. Couples must first submit the required signed paperwork online, pay the required fees, and have the necessary documents approved by ministry officials.

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The registrar will confirm the identity of the couple and witnesses before he signs the marriage certificate, which is then sent to a specialized court to be attested. The couple will then receive confirmation that their marriage certificate has been successful issued through a text message sent to the case’s registered mobile number.

The ministry says it launched the service “to maintain the health of the public and that of people working in courts and to limit the presence of employees in courts.”

No announcement has been made about divorce proceedings, which were suspended in Dubai alongside marriages last Wednesday “until further notice” while the Emirate remains under a strict 24-hour lockdown.

Under the current lockdown, residents are required to apply for permits to leave their homes, which are only granted by Dubai Police for essential services, work or emergencies.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 10:02 - GMT 07:02
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