There are plans for it to be scrapped in May 2011 after which you will both (legal or not) just need to give notice to the registrar or vicar in the usual way.
It is up to you whether you make an application for a COA or not, they can often take a few months to get a decision by which time it could be scrapped or you could get a decision sooner which would mean that yu could get married sooner. It is up to you. It is free to make the application so you may want to make it anyway just in case the plans to abolish the COA are postponed or don't happen for any reason.
I hope this helps.
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