Kern County Marriage License Requirements

Kern County
Marriage License Requirements

Are wedding bells in the air? Planning your big day involves more than just selecting the perfect venue and flowers. Securing a marriage license is a crucial step that requires careful consideration. In California, there are two primary types of marriage licenses: the public marriage license and the confidential marriage license. Let’s dive into the details of each type, the requirements, and the steps you need to take to make your union official.

Types of Marriage Licenses in California

Public Marriage License

A “public” California marriage license is readily accessible to the public for viewing. All personal information on this type of license is open for scrutiny. Anyone can request a copy of the information with proper authorization.

Confidential Marriage License

On the other hand, a “confidential” marriage license safeguards personal information from public view. To obtain a copy of the information, a court order or a notarized application by either spouse is required.

Required Information for Marriage License Application

When applying for a marriage license, both parties—referred to as Party A and Party B—must provide the following information:

  • Valid driver’s license or DMV issued Identification Card. Alternatively, a certified copy of the birth certificate and another acceptable form of picture identification can be provided.
  • For a Confidential Marriage License, both parties must be living together as a married couple and be at least 18 years old.

Obtaining a Confidential Marriage License

To get a Confidential Marriage License:

  1. Both parties must be at least 18 years of age.
  2. Both parties must be living together as a married couple.
  3. Provide valid photo identification.
See also  Del Norte Marriage License Requirements

Marriage License Fees in California

The cost of obtaining a marriage license in California varies depending on the type:

  • Public License: $68
  • Confidential License: $80

It’s advisable to have the preferred method of payment, usually cash, on hand. For alternative payment options, contacting the appropriate office ahead of time is recommended.

Special Considerations

Waiting Period and Residency Requirement

Fortunately, there’s no waiting period to receive your marriage license in California. Upon submitting your application, you’ll receive the license immediately.

Furthermore, you don’t need to be a California resident to marry in Kern County.

Previous Marriages and Domestic Partnerships

If you’ve been divorced within the last 90 days, proof of the court order is required when applying for a license. Additionally, those in a State Registered Domestic Partnership must adhere to specific regulations before entering a new marriage.


Obtaining a marriage license is a significant step on the path to marital bliss. Whether you opt for a public or confidential license, understanding the requirements and legalities ensures a smooth process. So, gather your documents, choose the right license type, and embark on your journey to wedded happiness.


  1. Is a blood test required to obtain a marriage license in California? No, blood tests are not required.
  2. Can cousin marriages occur in California? Yes, first and second cousins may legally marry.
  3. Are proxy marriages allowed in California? No, marriage by proxy is not permitted.
  4. Is there a common law marriage provision in California? No, common law marriages are not recognized.
  5. What is the age requirement for obtaining a marriage license in California? If you are 17 or younger, you must contact the Kern County Probation Department. For those 18 and older, both parties must be present when obtaining a marriage license.

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