Marriage License Requirements
When it comes to tying the knot in the beautiful state of California, obtaining a marriage license is a vital step in the process. This article delves into the intricacies of marriage licenses, shedding light on the key differences between a Public Marriage License and a Confidential Marriage License. Whether you’re planning a grand celebration or an intimate ceremony, understanding these license types is essential to ensure a smooth journey towards marital bliss.
Marriage is a sacred bond, and obtaining the right marriage license is the foundation of this union. In California, couples have the choice between two types of marriage licenses: Public and Confidential. Each option caters to specific needs and preferences, ensuring that your wedding plans align perfectly with your desires.
What is a Public Marriage License?
A Public Marriage License is an official document that is available for public viewing. It contains personal information about the individuals involved in the marriage and is accessible to anyone who wishes to see it. This type of license is commonly used for traditional weddings and ceremonies.
What is a Confidential Marriage License?
On the other hand, a Confidential Marriage License offers a higher level of privacy. All personal details on this license are protected from public scrutiny. Only the spouses themselves or individuals with a notarized application or court order can access the information. This option is ideal for couples seeking a more intimate and discreet celebration.
To obtain a marriage license, both parties (referred to as First Person and Second Person) must appear together at the Lassen County Clerk-Recorder’s office. The application process involves filling out a form, providing valid photo identification with birth dates, and paying the appropriate fee.
While birth certificates are not mandatory, knowing the full names of both parents and the state of their birth is crucial. This information, along with your affirmation of being an unmarried couple, ensures the accuracy of the license application.
Marriage Waiting Period
Unlike some states, California has no waiting period for obtaining a marriage license. You’ll receive your license immediately upon completing the application.
You do not need to be a California resident to marry in Lassen County. This opens the door for couples from various locations to celebrate their union in this picturesque region.
If you’ve been married before, you’ll need to provide details about your previous marriage, including the date it ended and the reason (Death, Dissolution, Divorce, or Nullity). Some counties might require documentation of the final judgment if your previous marriage ended through dissolution or nullity.
Marriage License Fees
The cost of a marriage license varies based on the type. A Public Marriage License is priced at $51, while a Confidential Marriage License is $70. These fees can be paid in cash or by check to the county clerk.
Marriage by proxy is not allowed in California. For a marriage to be valid, both parties, the officiant, and any witnesses must be physically present together during the ceremony.
Yes, California permits first and second cousins to legally marry.
Common Law Marriages
California does not recognize common law marriages.
Marriage Blood Test
Unlike some states, California does not require a blood test to obtain a marriage license.
Obtaining a marriage license with your new name does not automatically change your name. If you wish to change your last name, you can use an online marriage name change kit.
Marriage Age Requirement
If either partner is under 18, one parent or legal guardian must be present. In the absence of a parent, proper evidence must be presented for verification, including a certified copy of the birth certificate. A counseling session and appearance before a superior court judge are also necessary.
Authorized Marriage Officiants
California law designates several individuals authorized to officiate marriage ceremonies, including religious leaders, judges, magistrates, and more.
Returning the Marriage License
After the ceremony, the person officiating the marriage must return the original license to the County Clerk or County Recorder within 10 days.
Expiration Date of Marriage License
Marriage licenses are valid for 90 days from the date of issuance. If the marriage does not take place within this period, a new license must be purchased.
Navigating the world of marriage licenses in California is a crucial step in preparing for your wedding day. Whether you opt for a Public or Confidential Marriage License, each choice carries unique benefits. From ensuring privacy to embracing tradition, understanding these options empowers you to make an informed decision that aligns with your vision of marital bliss.
- Can I access my Confidential Marriage License information publicly? Confidential Marriage License information is protected and can only be accessed by the spouses or individuals with a notarized application or court order.
- What if I need a certified copy of my marriage license after the ceremony? You can request and pay for a certified copy from the County Clerk or County Recorder.
- Are blood tests required for a marriage license in California? No, blood tests are not required to obtain a marriage license in California.
- Can I change my last name on the marriage license? Obtaining a marriage license with a new name does not automatically change your name. You can use an online marriage name change kit for this purpose.
- How long is a marriage license valid in California? Marriage licenses are valid for 90 days from the date of issuance. If the marriage does not occur within this period, a new license must be obtained.