Marriage License Requirements
Marriage is a beautiful union between two individuals, and if you’re planning to tie the knot in the picturesque state of Colorado, understanding the marriage license process is crucial. From the necessary documents to the application procedure, let’s delve into the details of obtaining a marriage license in the Centennial State.
Marriage is a commitment that begins with a legal process, and in Colorado, this involves obtaining a marriage license. This license is a crucial document that allows you to solemnize your marriage and is a requirement for legal recognition.
Application for a Marriage License
Appearing in Person
Both parties intending to get married must appear in person to apply for and sign the marriage application. This process ensures that all parties involved are fully aware and consent to the marriage.
In special cases where one party cannot be present, such as due to illness, being out of state, or incarceration, an absentee application can be used. The party applying on behalf of the absent party must bring the absentee application along with proper identification.
Notarization of Absentee Application
If an absentee application is used, it must be notarized in advance to verify its authenticity.
To complete the application for a marriage license, the following documents are required:
Proof of Age
Valid forms of proof include a Driver’s License issued in the United States, Passport, Military ID, or State-issued ID Card.
Social Security Number
If either party lacks a social security number, they must sign an affidavit provided by the County Clerk’s office during the application process.
Place of Birth and Parents’ Information
The application form must include the city and state of birth for both parties, as well as the names and current addresses of their parents.
Acceptable Forms of Identification
Various forms of identification are accepted, including:
- Birth Certificate
- Valid Driver’s License
- Passport (both expired and valid)
- Valid state identification card
- Military identification
- Alien Registration Card (Green card)
- Any U.S. government issued identification containing relevant information
Waiting Period and Residency Requirements
Unlike some states, Colorado does not have a waiting period for getting married. Additionally, there is no requirement for applicants to be Colorado residents.
Divorce and Previous Marriages
If a party has been divorced within 30 days of applying for the marriage license, the final decree must be presented. If the divorce occurred over 30 days prior, relevant information must be provided.
Marriage License Fees
The fee for a marriage license in Colorado is $30, payable in cash.
Proxy Marriages and Absentee Applications
Colorado allows proxy marriages, where one party can be absent and represented by another individual. This is especially useful for those who are unable to be present due to specific circumstances.
Cousin Marriages and Common Law Marriages
First and second cousins are legally allowed to marry in Colorado, and the state recognizes common law marriages.
Marriage Blood Test and Name Change
Unlike some states, Colorado does not require blood tests for marriage. Additionally, obtaining a marriage license with a new name does not automatically change your name; a separate process is required.
Age Requirements and Parental Consent
The legal age for marriage without parental consent in Colorado is 18. For those aged 16 or 17, a written and notarized Parental Consent Form is required.
Applicants younger than 15 must obtain a court order granting judicial approval in the relevant county.
Authorized Marriage Officiants
Couples may solemnize their own marriage in Colorado, but other authorized officiants include judges, retired judges, magistrates, Indian tribe officials, and clergy. Self-solemnizing does not allow friends or relatives to sign as officiants.
Witnesses and Expiration Date
Unlike some states, witnesses are not required in Colorado. The marriage license is valid for 35 days, and the completed marriage certificate must be returned to the County Clerk’s office within 63 days after the ceremony.
Recording the Marriage Certificate
After the ceremony, the completed marriage certificate must be returned to the County Clerk’s office for recording. Failure to do so within the specified timeframe may result in late fees.
Obtaining a marriage license is a vital step in the journey to marriage. Understanding the requirements, procedures, and regulations in Colorado ensures that your union is legally recognized and celebrated with joy.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Can I apply for a marriage license if I am not a Colorado resident? Yes, Colorado does not require applicants to be residents of the state.
- Is there a waiting period before getting married in Colorado? No, there is no waiting period for marriage in Colorado.
- Can I change my name through a marriage license? Obtaining a marriage license with a new name does not automatically change your name. Additional steps are needed.
- Are witnesses required at the marriage ceremony? No, witnesses are not required in Colorado.
- What is the expiration date of a marriage license in Colorado? The marriage license is valid for 35 days, and the completed marriage certificate must be returned within 63 days after the ceremony.