Differences between Civil and Muslim Law Marriage in Singapore

muslim law marriage

For the past 5 years, an average of more than 70 marriages have occurred daily in Singapore.

Marriage can occur under two branches: civil marriage and Muslim marriage. But what are the distinctions to getting these marriages recognised? This article outlines the key similarities and differences in criteria to get a marriage solemnised under civil and Muslim Law in Singapore.

Civil Marriage Muslim Law Marriage
  • Both individuals need to be at least 21 years old.
  • Only heterosexual couples are allowed in Singapore
  • You cannot be currently married to another individual
  • Marriages with ex-spouses need to be legally dissolved
  • If you are a divorcee, you need to declare any maintenance orders in your statutory declarations
  • If you are between the ages of 18 and 21, it is mandatory to complete the marriage preparation programme
  • Submit marriage application
  • Book for date, time and venue for solemnisation
  • Attend solemnisation
  • You cannot be closely related to your fiancée/fiancé.
  • At least one party needs to be non-Muslim
  • 2 witnesses – one for groom and one for bride, both above the age of 21
  • Book for a solemniser 3-6 months before date of solemnisation
  • Book and attend appointment with ROM
  • Both individuals need to be Muslim
  • For Muslim converts, you will need to obtain the official permanent conversion certificate from the Muslim Converts’ Association of Singapore
  • The groom would need to get permission from the bride’s wali (male legal guardian)
  • 2 Wakil (witnesses) – one for groom and one for bride. Both need to be Muslim men as witnesses and above the age of 21
  • Book for a Kadi or Naib Kadi within 21 – 150 days before date of marriage application
    • Kadi: A religious official who can solemnise the wedding with or without the bride’s wali
    • Naib Kadi: A religious official who can only solemnise the wedding with the bride’s wali
  • Attend Bersamamu (an in-person session) with your Kadi or Naib Kadi
  • Book and attend appointment with ROMM
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