This article examines the decisions in El Gamal v Al-Maktoum  EWHC B27 (Fam), Dukali v Lamrani  EWHC 1748 (Fam) and MA v JA and the Attorney General  EWHC 2219 (Fam), each of which concerned a marriage ceremony that took place in England and Wales, but did not comply with the formal requirements set out in the Marriage Acts. In all three cases the High Court applied the criteria established by Bodey J in Hudson v Leigh  EWHC 1306 (Fam) to determine the effect of the defective marriage ceremony. In MA v JA the marriage was declared valid, but in El Gamal v Al-Maktoum and Dukali v Lamrani the marriage was non-existent. This paper considers the implications of the decisions and concludes that the state has a responsibility to publicise the formalities required to create a valid marriage and the consequences of failing to do so, in order to protect members of ethnic minority communities and immigrants who lack awareness of the requirements of English law.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||International Family Law|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2013|