Civil status, changes
- Registration entry for subjects
- Reliability and security
- Access to information
0. Registration entry for subjects
Civil status, changes
0.2 Subject area
0.3 Responsible authority; office, division, person etc.
0.4 Purpose and history
In 1735 bishops were charged with the collection of annual parsons marriage records. Information on divorce was collected from 1856 and judicial separations from 1959. Annual parish censuses were discontinued with the founding of the National Register of Persons in 1952, from which information on marriage and dissolved
0.5 Users and application
Local authorities, institutions, companies, organisations and individuals.
Parish records and the National Register of Persons, where information on marriage (including registered partnerships) and divorce is registered.
0.7 Legal basis for official statistics
Act on Statistics Iceland no. 24/1913.
0.8 Response burden
National church ministers, priests, and the heads of other religious organisation, and district court judges continuously send Statistics Iceland reports on marriages conducted by them.
0.9 EEA and EU obligations
1.1 Description of content
Statistics Iceland annually publishes extensive tables on marriage and dissolved marriage. The following prerequisites must be met for marriage and divorce to be counted in the tables of Statistics Iceland: Marriage is counted if two of the following three domiciles are in Iceland: 1. domicile of woman before marriage, 2. domicile of man before marriage, and 3. common domicile of couple after marriage. Registered partnerships (same-sex marriages) were introduced by Act no. 87/1996 and are considered equal to other marriages. Similarly divorce is counted in the tables if two of the following domiciles are in Iceland: 1. domicile of woman after divorce, 2. domicile of man after divorce, and 3. common domicile of couple before divorce. The same applies to judicial separations. The following factors appear in published material:
- Marriage by type of marriage ceremony and previous marital status of spouses
- Marriage by age of spouses
- Mean age, media age and modal age of spouses by previous marital status
- Age-specific marriage rates by previous marital status
- End of marriages and judicial separations
- Divorces by age of couples
- Mean age, median age and modal age of divorcing couples
- Divorces by length of marriage
- Custody of dependent children after divorce
In further tables marital status is shown by:
- Marriages by month
- Domicile of spouses before and after marriage
- Type of marriage by type of ceremony
- Nationality of spouses
- Marriage by marriage ceremony and place
1.2 Statistical concepts
Marriage rate: Calculated as the number of marriages per 1,000 inhabitants.
Divorce rate: Usually calculated as number of divorces per 1,000 inhabitants. Sometimes the divorce rate is calculated as number of divorces per 1,000 couples.
Type of marriage ceremony: Can be either civil or ecclesiastic.
Registered partnership: Two individuals of the same sex marrying.
Marital status: In the national Register of Persons, marital status is itemised into the following groups: unmarried, married or in registered partnership, widower/widow, judicially separated, divorced, partners not in cohabitation, Icelandic national in marriage with foreign national who has rights as a foreign citizen and is therefore not registered, marital status not declared, Icelandic national domiciled abroad, in marriage with foreign national who is not registered, Icelandic national domiciled in Iceland, spouses married but not in cohabitation.
2.1 Reference periods
Annual tables on marital status are compiled at the end of May or beginning of June.
2.2 Process time
The process time is six months; from end of year until June.
Statistics on marital status are publlished annually in the Statistical Yearbook of Iceland. Further information is available from the database of the Information Department of Statistics Iceland.
2.4 Frequency of releases
Statistics on marital status are released once per year and published in the Statistical Yearbook of Iceland.
3. Reliability and security
3.1 Accuracy and reliability
Late reports on marriage and divorce are the main source of errors to figures on marital status. Over the last five years, on average six marriage reports, one divorce report and one report on judicial separation were missing.
3.2 Sources of errors
Errors in the National Register of Persons mainly occur due to late reports. A precaution taken to keep errors to a minimum is to allow five months to pass for reports on marriage/divorce to reach the National Register of Persons.
3.3 Measures on confidence limits/accuracy
Confidence limits are not calculated.
4.1 Comparison between periods
Annual parish censuses were discontinued with the founding of the National Register of Persons 1952, from which information on marital status has been gathered since.
4.2 Comparison with other statistics
4.3 Coherence between preliminary and final statistics
No preliminary statistics are released for marital status.
5. Access to information
5.1 Forms of dissemination
- News, released on Statistics Iceland's website
- Statistics, categorised statistical web tables
- Statistical Series, Hagtíðindi
- Statistical Yearbook of Iceland, Landshagir
- Population statistics until 1980, in the series Hagskýrslur Íslands
- Hagskinna . Icelandic historical statistics
5.2 Basic data; storage and usability
Data stored in digital format by the Population Statistics Department of Statistics Iceland. No access is provided to data relating to individuals, though it is possible to have it especially processed.
5.4 Other information
Further information is available from the Population Statistics Department of Statistics Iceland.
© Hagstofa �slands, �ann 27-1-2009