Madison County Marriage License Requirements
Getting married is a significant milestone in anyone’s life, and one of the essential steps in this process is obtaining a marriage license. However, the fees and requirements for obtaining a marriage license can vary from state to state. In Florida, the Sunshine State, there are specific guidelines and costs associated with obtaining a marriage license. In this article, we’ll walk you through the process and fees for getting a marriage license in Florida.
Before embarking on the journey of marriage, it’s important to understand the legal requirements and fees associated with obtaining a marriage license. Florida offers a streamlined process for couples to obtain their marriage license, but there are certain criteria that must be met.
Marriage License Application Process
To apply for a marriage license in Florida, both applicants must be at least 18 years old. If one or both applicants are under 18 but at least 16 years old, a birth certificate and proof of identification are required, along with notarized written consent from parents or guardians. Applicants under 16 must obtain a determination from a County Court Judge.
The legal age for marriage without parental consent is 18 years. With parental consent, the legal age is 16. In cases where the bride is pregnant, a doctor’s certification is required, and a hearing before a county judge may be necessary.
For applicants under 18 but over 16, parental consent is mandatory. Both parents or guardians must provide notarized written consent.
Blood Test Not Required
Unlike in the past, Florida no longer requires a blood test as part of the marriage license application process.
A marriage license application in Florida comes with a fee. The standard fee is $93.50, payable at the time of application.
Fee Reduction with Premarital Course
Couples can enjoy a reduced fee of $61.00 if they provide a valid certificate of completion from a premarital course conducted by a registered premarital provider.
Reading the “Family Law Handbook”
Both applicants are required by law to read the “Family Law Handbook.”
Scheduling an Appointment
It’s recommended to contact the local Madison County Clerk’s Office well in advance to schedule an appointment and gather information about office hours and any additional requirements.
Required Identification Documents
Applicants must provide photo identification such as a driver’s license, state ID card, valid passport, or I-94 card.
Social Security Numbers
Both parties need to provide their Social Security numbers but not their Social Security Cards.
Certified Copy of Birth Certificate
A certified copy of the birth certificate might be required, especially if there are any discrepancies in the provided identification.
Waiting Period and Pre-Marital Course
Florida Residents and Waiting Period
Florida residents have a 3-day waiting period unless they have attended a 4-hour pre-marital course. Proof of course completion is required.
Non-Florida Residents and Waiting Period
Non-Florida residents are not subject to the waiting period.
Discount for Premarital Course Completion
Both residents and non-residents can receive a $32.50 discount on their marriage license by completing an approved premarital course. The course must be taken within one year before applying for the marriage license.
There is no residency requirement for obtaining a marriage license in Madison County, Florida.
If either party has been previously married, the date of divorce or spouse’s death must be supplied. If the event occurred within the past 30 days, a certified copy of the divorce decree or death certificate is required.
Blood Test Requirement
Florida does not require blood tests for obtaining a marriage license.
Marriage License Fees
The standard fee for a marriage license in Florida is $93.50. However, this fee can be reduced to $61.00 for applicants who have completed a premarital course.
Marriage Preparation Course
Privileges for Florida Residents
Florida residents who complete an approved marriage preparation course can enjoy a $32.50 discount on the marriage license fee.
Waived Waiting Period
The 3-day waiting period is waived for couples who complete an approved marriage preparation course.
Proof of Completion
Applicants must provide a certificate of completion from an approved course provider.
Proxy marriages are not allowed in Florida.
First and second cousins are legally allowed to marry in Florida.
Common Law Marriages
Common law marriages are not recognized in Florida.
Marriage Age Requirements
Without Parental Consent
The legal age for marriage without parental consent is 18 years.
With Parent’s Consent
With parental consent, the legal age for marriage is 16.
If the bride is pregnant, a doctor’s certification is required.
Minors with Previous Marriages
Minors who have been previously married can apply for a marriage license.
Obtaining a marriage license with a new name doesn’t automatically change the name. An online marriage name change kit can be used for this purpose.
Marriages in Florida can be officiated by ordained or licensed clergy, notary publics, and justices of the peace.
Witnesses are not required for marriage ceremonies in Florida.
Expiration Date of Marriage License
A marriage license in Florida is valid for 60 days after issuance, during which the marriage ceremony must take place.
Obtaining a Copy of Marriage Certificate
If you need a copy of your marriage certificate, you can request it from the Department of Children and Families, Division of Vital Statistics.
In conclusion, obtaining a marriage license in Florida involves a straightforward process with specific requirements and fees. Whether you’re a resident or non-resident, understanding these guidelines will ensure a smooth journey as you prepare for your special day.
- Can minors get married in Florida? Minors aged 16 or 17 can get married with parental consent, and younger minors require special considerations.
- Is a blood test required for a marriage license in Florida? No, Florida no longer requires a blood test for a marriage license.
- Can I change my name on the marriage license? Getting a marriage license with a new name doesn’t automatically change your name. You need to follow a separate process.
- Are witnesses required for a marriage ceremony in Florida? No, witnesses are not required for a marriage ceremony in Florida.
- How long is a marriage license valid in Florida? A marriage license in Florida is valid for 60 days after issuance. The marriage ceremony must take place within this period.