Family Life

Marriages in Canada

11. How can I change my name after marriage?
While getting your marriage registered, you can change your family name to your spouse's family name on the marriage certificate, but in all your other documents your name will remain the same. This is called an assumed name, something like an unofficial name. If you want to take your spouse's family name officially after marriage, what is called a married name, it is necessary to submit an application to Service Canada to change your family name in all Canadian documents. It can be done for free, if the marriage took place less than 90 days in the past. After that time the cost of changing the name will be 25 dollars.

12. What is a marriage contract?
When getting married in Canada you can create a marriage contract with your spouse. A marriage contract is a legal document in which you can specify:
•value of property owned by both spouses prior to the marriage,
•how the property will be divided in case of divorce,
•who will pay child support in the case of divorce,
•what kind of education and religious teaching the couple wants to give children,
You can sign the marriage contract after marriage as well. It is necessary to make a marriage contract with the participation of a lawyer, since if the marriage contract would violate the laws of Canada, the court may declare it invalid.

13. How can I organize a wedding party?
You generally should plan a wedding in advance, because usually there is a waiting list for popular places where people celebrate marriages. You can arrange your wedding by yourself or hire a wedding agency to make it a memorable event. You can order music, a beautifully decorated table and the services of a photographer or a videographer. According to 25 Canadian Wedding Facts That Might Surprise You (, the average cost of a Canadian wedding is $31,110, including the honeymoon. It includes the engagement ring ($4,000), a bridal gown ($1,716), renting the wedding venue ($9,430), flowers and decor ($1,478), music ($1,250), etc. To avoid such big expenses you can get married abroad, in what is called a destination wedding.

14. Where can I find sources of additional information about marriage in Canada?
We recommended the following sources of information about marriage in Canada:
Getting married
Marriage with following topics:
•Can same-sex couples get married in Ontario? Is gay marriage legal?
•How do I get a marriage certificate?
•How do I change my name after I get married?

15. Are there any Canadian sources in other languages?
What You Should Know about Family Law in Ontario (in 9 languages)
Family Law Education for Women (in 13 languages)
Marriage (in 11 languages) with the following topics:
•Will the Canadian government recognize my foreign marriage?
•Who can get married in Ontario?
•How do I get married in Ontario?
•How do I get a marriage licence?