Marriage Certificate Requirements
Are you considering tying the knot in Athens, Alabama? Navigating the legal requirements for obtaining a marriage certificate can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. We’re here to simplify the process for you and provide a comprehensive guide to understanding the marriage certificate fees, application procedures, and other essential details. Let’s dive in!
A Closer Look at the Clinton Street Courthouse Annex
Located at 100 South Clinton Street Suite D, Athens, Alabama 35611, the Clinton Street Courthouse Annex serves as the hub for marriage certificate applications. Operating from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday (excluding Court Approved Holidays), this establishment is the place where your journey to marital bliss begins.
Marriage Certificate Application: What You Need to Know
Legal Age and Parental Consent
If you’re under 18 but older than 16, you can apply for a marriage certificate with parental consent. However, if you’re 18 or older, no parental consent is required. The legal framework in Alabama respects the choices of consenting adults.
Embracing Diversity: Same-Sex Marriage
Alabama embraces love in all its forms. Same-sex marriage is legally recognized, ensuring that every couple’s union is treated with equality and respect.
No Waiting Period: Dive Right In!
Unlike some states, Alabama does not impose a waiting period after obtaining a divorce. You can jump into your new chapter of life without unnecessary delays.
Certificate Validity and Beyond
Your marriage certificate is valid for 30 days from the date of issuance. Remember, this certificate isn’t just a piece of paper; it symbolizes a binding agreement between you and your partner.
Blood Test and Residency: No Worries
Good news: Alabama doesn’t require a blood test or proof of residency. Love knows no borders, and your marital journey can start without geographical limitations.
In Alabama, witnesses are not required during your marriage ceremony. It’s all about you, your partner, and the commitment you’re making.
Alabama Act 2019-340: A Shift in Procedures
Under this act, the process of obtaining a marriage license has changed. You’re no longer required to file an application for a marriage license with the county probate court. Instead, the focus is on recording marriage certificates.
Marriage Certificate Requirement and Submission
To obtain a marriage certificate, follow these steps:
- Obtain a standardized marriage certificate form provided by the state, county probate judge’s office, or online.
- Fully complete the form, providing accurate and complete information about each spouse.
- Visit a notary to witness the signatures.
- Deliver the original, fully completed, and notarized form to the county Probate Judge’s office for recording, along with the filing fee specific to your county.
- Ensure submission within 30 days of signing the form.
For applicants aged 18 and older, the following forms of identification are accepted:
- Valid driver’s license
- Non-Driver’s license
- Certified copy of your birth certificate from the State or County
- Military identification
- Certified school record
If you’ve been divorced within the last 6 months, make sure to bring along a copy of your Divorce Decree.
Making a Name Change
Obtaining a marriage certificate with your new name is a significant step, but remember, it doesn’t automatically change your name. If you decide to make a name change, explore the convenience of an online marriage name change kit.
Marriage Age Requirements
For those aged 16 to 17, parental consent is necessary to enter into marriage. The process is straightforward and ensures that all parties involved are well-informed.
- Proxy Marriages: Unfortunately, proxy marriages are not permitted in Alabama.
- Cousin Marriages: Yes, first and second cousins can legally marry in Alabama.
- Common Law Marriages: Alabama recognizes a valid common law marriage based on specific criteria, ensuring the integrity of the marital institution.
Officiating Your Special Day
Solemnization is no longer a requirement for a recognized marriage in Alabama. Choose the best wedding officiant for your special day and celebrate your love in a way that resonates with you.
Marriage Certificate Expiration
Remember, marriage certificates remain valid for 30 days from the date of signing. The effective date of your marriage is based on the date both spouses sign the certificate.
Secure Your Copy
For any future reference or official matters, securing a copy of your marriage certificate is crucial. You can obtain a copy through the Alabama Department of Public Health at the following address:
Alabama Department of Public Health Bureau of Vital Statistics 434 Monroe St. Montgomery, Alabama 36130-3017 Ph: 334.613.5300 Fx: 334.240.3097
Navigating the process of obtaining a marriage certificate doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Alabama’s regulations prioritize your choices and love story, making the journey towards matrimony smoother. Remember, a marriage certificate is more than just a legal document – it’s a symbol of the commitment and bond you share with your partner.
- Is there a waiting period for marriage in Alabama?
- There is no waiting period, except for couples who have been divorced. In that case, a 60-day waiting period applies after the divorce is final.
- Can non-residents get married in Alabama?
- Yes, non-residents can get married in Alabama. However, some non-residents may have a three-day waiting period if they choose to be married by a county marriage official.
- What is the fee for a marriage certificate in Alabama?
- The marriage certificate fee in Alabama is $70.00, and the preferred method of payment is cash.
- Do I need a blood test to get married in Alabama?
- No, a premarital blood test is no longer required in Alabama.
- Can I change my name through my marriage certificate in Alabama?
- Obtaining a marriage certificate with your new name doesn’t automatically change your name. To change your last name, you can use an online marriage name change kit.