A customary marriage is one that’s "negotiated, celebrated or concluded according to any of the systems of indigenous African customary law which exist in South Africa". This doesn’t include marriages concluded in Hindu, Muslim or other religious rites.
Requirements for a customary marriage
For a customary marriage to be recognised as a valid marriage, it must have been entered before 15 November 2000. However, if entered after 15 November 2000, it must comply with the following requirements:
Registering customary marriages
Customary marriages must be registered within 3 months of taking place. This can be done at any office of the Department of Home Affairs or through a designated traditional leader in areas where there are no Home Affairs offices.
The following people should present themselves at either a Home Affairs office or a traditional leader to register a customary marriage:
If the spouses were minors (or 1 was a minor) at the time of the customary marriage, the parents should also be present when the request to register the marriage is made.
Customary marriages are registered by completing BI-1699 and paying the required fees. An acknowledgement of receipt BI-1700 will then be issued by the Department of Home Affairs.
Registering more than one customary marriage
If a male person is already in a customary marriage and wishes to enter into another customary marriage he must, at his own cost, get a court order from a competent court that will regulate his future matrimonial property system.
It’s also possible for a male person who's already in a customary marriage to one wife to enter into a civil marriage. They should follow the normal procedure for civil marriages. Remember that neither spouses will be able to enter into customary marriages with anyone else while they're married to each other under civil law.
Additional information about customary marriages:
These facility categories:
|(The Government of South Africa)