Lamar Probate Court
Marriage License Requirements
Marriage is a significant life event, and getting a marriage license is a crucial step towards formalizing this commitment. If you’re planning to tie the knot in Georgia, it’s important to understand the marriage license fees and requirements. This article will guide you through the process, fees, and essential details you need to know to obtain a marriage license in Georgia.
Marriage is a beautiful union, and if you’re planning to get married in Georgia, understanding the legal requirements and associated fees is essential. This article will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the process, documents needed, fees, and other important details.
Marriage License Application Process
To apply for a marriage license in Georgia, couples need to follow a specific application process. This involves submitting an application form to the appropriate county probate court. It’s recommended to initiate the process well in advance to ensure everything is in order for your big day.
When applying for a marriage license, several documents are required, including valid identification for both applicants. Additionally, if either applicant does not speak fluent English, a Court Approved Translator will be necessary for the application process. Certified copies of divorce papers or a death certificate are also needed if applicable.
Application Fees and Counseling
The cost of a marriage license varies depending on whether the couple has undergone pre-marital counseling. The application fee is $56 without pre-marital counseling and $16 with counseling, provided the couple presents a certificate of completion for the counseling course. This is a crucial factor to consider when budgeting for your wedding.
Marriage ID Requirements
Georgia accepts various forms of identification for the marriage license application, including a driver’s license, state ID, resident alien ID, military ID, or passport. This ensures that the applicants’ identities are verified and the process remains secure.
Marriage Waiting Period
Unlike some states, Georgia does not have a waiting period for getting married. This means that once you obtain your marriage license, you can proceed with your wedding ceremony without delay.
Marriage Residency Requirement
One of the advantages of getting married in Georgia is that you do not have to be a resident of the state to apply for a marriage license. This opens up the possibility for destination weddings.
Previous Marriages and Divorce
If either applicant has previously been married and divorced, specific documentation is required to prove the dissolution of the previous marriage. This ensures that legal matters are properly addressed before entering into a new marriage.
Marriage License Fees
The fees associated with obtaining a marriage license in Georgia can vary based on different factors. For instance, without completing pre-marital education, the fee is $56. However, with pre-marital education, the fee reduces to $16. Additionally, there are charges for certified copies of the marriage license and application.
Proxy Marriages and Cousin Marriages
Georgia does not allow proxy marriages, but it does permit first and second cousins to marry legally within the state.
Common Law Marriages
While Georgia does not recognize common-law marriages established after January 1, 1997, marriages established before this date are valid.
Marriage Blood Test
As of July 1, 2003, blood tests are no longer required for obtaining a marriage license in Georgia. This change simplifies the process for couples.
Name After Marriage and Name Change
Georgia law mandates that each applicant designate the legal surname they will use after marriage. Various options are available, and changing your name requires a separate process.
Marriage Age Requirements
Applicants must be at least 18 years old to apply for a marriage license without parental consent. For applicants aged 16 or 17, written parental consent is necessary.
Proof of Age
Georgia law requires applicants to provide proof of age. Acceptable documents include birth certificates, driver’s licenses, baptismal certificates, and more.
Marriage Officiants and Witnesses
Licensed ministers, clergymen, pastors of recognized religious societies, and justices of the peace can officiate weddings in Georgia. Witnesses may be required if the officiant doesn’t complete the necessary forms.
Expiration Date of Marriage License
Unlike some states, the marriage license in Georgia does not have an expiration date. This provides flexibility for planning your wedding.
Georgia Online Marriage Application
Applying for a marriage license online is a convenient option provided by the Georgia Probate Record website. This simplifies the application process for busy couples.
Obtaining Your Marriage Certificate
After your wedding, you’ll receive a marriage certificate. In Georgia, this is obtained from the Vital Records office. The certificate serves as legal proof of your marriage.
Obtaining a marriage license is a crucial step in the journey towards marriage. Understanding the requirements, fees, and process involved is essential for a smooth experience. By following the guidelines outlined in this article, you’ll be well-prepared to embark on your marital journey.
- Q: How much is the application fee for a marriage license in Georgia? A: The fee varies based on pre-marital counseling. It’s $56 without counseling and $16 with counseling.
- Q: Can out-of-state residents get married in Georgia? A: Yes, Georgia does not have a residency requirement for obtaining a marriage license.
- Q: Are blood tests required for a marriage license in Georgia? A: No, blood tests have not been required in Georgia since July 1, 2003.
- Q: Can common-law marriages be established in Georgia? A: Common-law marriages established before January 1, 1997, are recognized in Georgia.
- Q: What identification is required for a marriage license application? A: Acceptable forms of identification include a driver’s license, state ID, passport, and more.