Marriage License Requirements
If you’re planning to tie the knot in Arkansas, understanding the ins and outs of obtaining a marriage license is essential. From eligibility requirements to application procedures, we’ve got you covered. Let’s delve into the details to ensure you’re well-prepared for your special day.
Congratulations on your decision to get married in the beautiful state of Arkansas! To make your journey smoother, we’ve compiled a comprehensive guide to obtaining a marriage license. From the necessary documents to the application process, we’ve got all the information you need right here.
Eligibility for Marriage License
Before you start the application process, it’s crucial to ensure you meet the eligibility requirements. Both parties must be 18 years or older and provide valid government-issued identification showing their correct name and date of birth.
Applying for a marriage license is a straightforward process. Both parties need to appear in person at the County Clerk’s office. The application fee is $60.00, and the license is typically issued on the spot.
Proper identification is key. Make sure to bring your state-issued ID, valid driver’s license, Indian card, passport, visa (not expired), military ID, or original birth certificate.
Application Fee and Returning the License
The application fee for a marriage license is $60.00, payable in cash. Remember, whether you use the license or not, it must be returned to the County Clerk’s office within SIXTY (60) days from the date of issuance.
Marriage ID Requirement
In addition to the age requirement, you must have one of the specified forms of identification to obtain a marriage license in Arkansas. These include state-issued IDs, valid driver’s licenses, Indian cards, passports, visas, military IDs, or original birth certificates.
Marriage Waiting Period
Good news for eager lovebirds: there is no waiting period for obtaining a marriage license in Arkansas if both applicants are over the age of 18. However, if one party is 17 or under, or if either party is 16 or 17 and seeking parental consent, a 5-business day waiting period applies.
Marriage Residency Requirement
Thinking of having a destination wedding in Arkansas? You’re in luck! You don’t have to be a resident of the state to obtain a marriage license. The license is valid for use anywhere within Arkansas.
Previous Marriages and Name Changes
If you were previously married, be prepared to provide information about your divorce decree, including the date, county, and state. If you’ve changed your name due to divorce, you’ll need to bring a certified copy of your divorce decree.
Marriage License Fees
The marriage license fee in Arkansas is $60.00, payable in cash. For alternative payment methods, be sure to contact the appropriate office beforehand.
Arkansas offers the option of a Covenant Marriage, which involves an additional declaration of intent and authorized counseling. This unique approach emphasizes the nature, purposes, and responsibilities of marriage.
Proxy, Cousin, and Common Law Marriages
Unfortunately, Arkansas does not allow proxy marriages, cousin marriages, or common law marriages.
Marriage Blood Test
Arkansas eliminates the need for blood or medical tests to obtain a marriage license.
Name Change After Marriage
While obtaining a marriage license with your new name is a step in the right direction, it doesn’t automatically change your name. If you wish to change your last name, an online marriage name change kit can guide you through the process.
Marriage Age Requirements
If you’re under 18, parental consent is required. The consent of both parents or a court-appointed guardian is necessary for individuals under 18 who wish to enter into a contract for marriage. In cases where one party is pregnant and under 18, or when a child has already been born to the parties, special considerations apply.
In Arkansas, Justices of the Peace and ordained ministers can solemnize marriages. Ministers must have their credentials recorded in any Arkansas county. The responsibility for returning the license after the ceremony lies with the applicants.
Surprisingly, no witnesses are required for marriages in Arkansas.
Expiration Date of Marriage License
Your marriage license is valid for 60 days. While it can be used anywhere in the state, it must be returned to the County Clerk’s office where you initially applied.
Obtaining a Copy of Certificate of Marriage License
In case you need a copy of your marriage license, the Division of Vital Records in Little Rock can assist you.
With this comprehensive guide, you’re well-equipped to navigate the process of obtaining a marriage license in Arkansas. Remember, while the legal requirements are important, what truly matters is the love and commitment you and your partner share.
- Can I apply for a marriage license online? Unfortunately, you must apply for a marriage license in person at the County Clerk’s office.
- Is a waiting period necessary for all couples? No, there is no waiting period if both parties are 18 or older. A 5-day waiting period applies for younger applicants with parental consent.
- What is a Covenant Marriage? A Covenant Marriage involves a declaration of intent and authorized counseling, emphasizing the responsibilities of marriage.
- Can I change my name immediately after getting a marriage license? Obtaining a marriage license with your new name doesn’t automatically change it. You can use an online marriage name change kit for guidance.
- Are proxy marriages allowed in Arkansas? No, Arkansas does not permit proxy marriages.