If you are someone who is about to get married in a little while, you got to be busy with a lot of marriage preparations. You must be fixing up your wedding dress for a perfect fit or could be busy finalizing the flavor of your wedding cake.
But, what about the marriage application?
Do you know what is a marriage license? And, how do you get a marriage license?
So, if you want to get lawfully wedded, you got to know how to get a wedding license and the marriage license requirements.
In the United States, the license for marriage is considered to be a legal permit that acknowledges the validity of a couple’s marriage; a valid marital license will confirm that the couple is of legal age to marriage and otherwise do not have any qualifications that might exclude them from marriage (such as, in most states, being blood-related).
Now that you know how important getting a marriage license is, let us read ahead for the essential aspects pertaining to license for marriage.
In some states, you could rush to the county clerk’s office to apply for the marital license. But, in others, you might not be able to procure the marriage permit the same day.
So, if you are interested in obtaining a marriage permit without getting into a last-minute hustle, consider the following essential tips.
1. Look up state marriage license requirements
The requirements for how to get a license for marriage can vary from state to state—so be sure to look up your state’s particular requirements, as some states require different types of paperwork or applications than others.
Most states will require information such as birth certificates, proof of residency, state-issued photo IDs, social security numbers, as well as a fee.
2. Make sure to check the expiration date
If you want to know how and when to get a marriage license, you’ll need to check your calendar!
The valid date on a marriage permit can vary from district to district, so be sure to know how long marriage licenses are valid in your area.
For example, if a wedding license is only valid for 90 days in your district, don’t apply for one a year before your wedding, or you will need to go through the hassle of reapplying.
Some states actually require a waiting period in between obtaining a wedding license and actually marrying. Make sure you know the laws in your state regarding waiting periods.
3. Get medical testing
Get medical testing done, if it is applicable to you. It used to be mandatory in most states for couples to have physical examinations and medical screening before they could be legally married.
These types of laws were originally put on the books in an effort to stop the spread of contagious diseases. Still, most states have done away with mandatory premarital testing—with the exception of screening for tuberculosis, rubella, and sickle-cell anemia, which is still a requirement in many states.
Some states now require marriage clerks to offer couples HIV testing, although no states have mandatory HIV tests in order to receive a wedding license.
So, even if it isn’t mandatory for the safety of you and your partner, it is better to get the medical testing done in advance.
4. Make sure you and your partner can legally consent
In order for a marital license to be valid, you and your partner must be able to consent to the marriage legally.
In most states, this means that both you and your partner must not have been deemed ineligible to enter into contracts, either because of your age or due to a mental disability.
In states where couples can marry before they are 18 years old, permission—from a parent/guardian and in many cases, a court judge—must almost always be obtained before the license can be applied for.
Although it might seem obvious on the surface, it is important to remember this fact if you don’t wish to waste your ferry to the clerk’s office!
6. Keep the license ready on time
Of course, you mustn’t miss carrying the exquisite wedding ring on your big day. But, there’s another thing that you must not forget to carry along on your wedding day, and that is your marriage license.
You can either get the license of marriage mailed to you or you can pick it yourself well in time. Make sure that all the details are properly mentioned on the license. If they are not, you need time to get the errors rectified.
After you get the license, keep it at a safe place. It is advisable to keep that in a file folder so that it doesn’t get smudged or folded.
These are the basics that you must remember before you start with the process of getting your wedding license. Remember to go through your state rules thoroughly, and do not keep these critical issues lingering till the nick of time.
Also, getting a license for marriage is the first step towards getting married. But, marriage is not just about the first step, it is a long journey ahead.
Watch the video given below to get the key tips on leading a happily married life.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.