Marriage License Requirements
Getting married is a significant milestone in anyone’s life, and the journey to tying the knot often starts with obtaining a marriage license. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process of acquiring a marriage license in Arapahoe County, Colorado. From the required documents to the legal procedures, we’ve got you covered.
The Arapahoe County Clerk and Recorder’s office plays a crucial role in facilitating marriages within its jurisdiction. Before you exchange vows, it’s important to understand the steps and requirements involved in obtaining a marriage license.
Who Can Apply?
Both individuals intending to marry must appear in person to apply for and sign the marriage application. This ensures the authenticity of the application.
In situations where one party cannot appear in person due to illness, out-of-state residency, or incarceration, an absentee application can be used. The absent party’s application must be notarized in advance.
To establish proof of age and identity, acceptable forms of identification include a Driver’s License, Passport, Military ID, or State-issued ID Card issued in the United States.
Social Security Number
If either party lacks a social security number, they can sign an affidavit provided by the County Clerk’s office during the application process.
Place of Birth and Parents’ Details
The application form requires details about the applicants’ place of birth (city and state) as well as their parents’ names and current addresses.
Unlike some states, there is no waiting period for getting married in Colorado, making it an efficient choice for couples eager to tie the knot.
Colorado does not impose residency requirements for marriage license applicants. You need not be a Colorado resident to obtain a license.
If a divorce was finalized within 30 days of applying for the marriage license, the final decree must be presented. For divorces finalized over 30 days ago, relevant divorce information must be provided.
Fees and Costs
Marriage License Fee
A marriage license in Colorado comes with a fee of $30, payable in cash.
It’s essential to return the completed marriage certificate within 63 days after the marriage ceremony for recording. After this period, late fees will be incurred.
In cases where one party is unable to appear in person, proxy marriages are allowed. The absent party can use an absentee application to participate.
Colorado permits first and second cousins to legally marry.
Common Law Marriages
Common law marriages are recognized in Colorado, providing couples meet specific criteria.
No Blood Tests Required
Unlike some states, Colorado does not require couples to undergo blood tests before obtaining a marriage license.
Changing Your Name
While you can get a marriage license with your new name, it doesn’t automatically change your name legally. An online marriage name change kit can assist with this process.
Legal Age for Marriage
The legal age to marry without parental consent is 18 years. However, those aged 16 or 17 can marry with a notarized Parental Consent Form.
Court Approval for Applicants Under 15
Applicants aged 15 or younger require a court order granting judicial approval. The court order must be obtained in the county where approval is granted.
Couples can solemnize their own marriage in Colorado. Others authorized to officiate include judges, magistrates, Indian tribe officials, clergy, and retired judges.
Witnesses: Are They Necessary?
Unlike some states, witnesses are not required in Colorado, although some officiants may request them.
Expiration and Recording
The marriage license is valid for 35 days. The completed marriage certificate, along with the attached license, must be returned to the County Clerk’s office for recording within 63 days after the ceremony.
Obtaining a Copy of the Marriage Certificate
For copies of the marriage certificate, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment should be contacted.
In conclusion, obtaining a marriage license in Arapahoe County, Colorado, involves a straightforward process that ensures the legality and authenticity of your union. By adhering to the outlined guidelines and requirements, you can embark on your journey into married life with confidence.
- Can I apply for a marriage license online? Unfortunately, marriage license applications must be submitted in person at the County Clerk’s office.
- Can a friend officiate my wedding ceremony? While couples can solemnize their own marriage, a friend cannot sign as an officiant on a marriage certificate.
- Are witnesses required during the marriage ceremony? No, witnesses are not necessary for a marriage ceremony in Colorado, though some officiants may request them.
- What is the cost of a marriage license in Colorado? The marriage license fee in Colorado is $30.
- How long is the marriage license valid? The marriage license is valid for 35 days from the date of issuance.