Marion Probate Court
Marriage License Requirements
Marriage is a beautiful union of two souls, and obtaining a marriage license is an essential step on the path to matrimony. In the state of Georgia, this process comes with its own set of requirements and fees. Whether you’re planning a lavish wedding or an intimate ceremony, understanding the ins and outs of obtaining a marriage license can help ensure your special day goes off without a hitch.
Understanding the Importance of a Marriage License
A marriage license is a legal document that authorizes two individuals to marry. It serves as proof that you meet the state’s requirements for marriage and gives you the legal right to proceed with your wedding ceremony.
Marriage License Application: A Step-by-Step Guide
ID Requirements for Applicants
Before applying for a marriage license, both individuals need to provide valid identification. Acceptable forms of identification include:
- Driver’s License
- State ID
- Resident Alien ID
- Military ID
Special Considerations for Non-English Speakers
If either applicant does not speak fluent English, a Court Approved Translator will be required to apply for the marriage license.
Divorce and Widowed Individuals: Certified Documents Required
If either applicant has been previously married, certified copies of divorce papers or a death certificate are necessary.
Providing Parental Information
The application requires information about each parent’s birthplace (city and state) and the mother’s maiden name.
Marriage License Fees: What You Need to Know
Standard Application Fee
The application fee for a marriage license in Georgia is $56. This fee covers the cost of processing your application.
Reduced Fee with Pre-Marital Counseling
Couples who have completed pre-marital counseling can benefit from a reduced application fee of $16. To qualify, you must present a certificate of completion for the counseling course.
Additional Charges for Certified Copies
In addition to the application fee, there is a $10 charge for a certified copy of the marriage license, which will be mailed to you after recording. The certified copy of the license application for the Social Security Administration also costs $10.
Navigating the Residency Requirement
Unlike some states, Georgia does not require you to be a resident of the state to obtain a marriage license.
The Marriage Waiting Period: Is There One?
In Georgia, there is no waiting period for getting married once you’ve obtained your marriage license.
Marrying Again? Previous Marriages and Their Impact
Individuals who have been previously married need to provide documentation of their divorce, including the final judgment and decree.
Accepted Forms of Identification
The state of Georgia accepts various forms of identification as proof of age, including birth certificates, driver’s licenses, and passports.
Who Can Officiate Your Wedding?
Licensed or ordained ministers, clergymen, pastors of recognized religious societies, and justices of the peace can officiate your wedding.
Witnesses and Proxy Marriages
In cases where the person performing the ceremony does not complete the form, two witnesses are required to obtain the marriage certificate. Proxy marriages are not allowed in Georgia.
Name Changes After Marriage: What Are Your Options?
Georgia law requires each applicant to designate the legal surname they will use after marriage. This can be one’s present surname, the surname of a previous marriage, or a spouse’s surname.
Age Requirements for Marriage in Georgia
Both applicants must be 18 years or older to apply for a marriage license without parental consent. Applicants aged 16 or 17 require written consent from their parent(s).
Proof of Age: Documentation Needed
Georgia law mandates that proof of age be presented at the time of application. Accepted documents include birth certificates, driver’s licenses, baptismal certificates, and more.
The Role of Marriage Witnesses
Two witnesses are required for the ceremony, unless the officiating person completes the form.
Expiration Date of Your Marriage License
Fortunately, a marriage license in Georgia does not have an expiration date.
Applying for a Marriage License Online
Modern convenience allows you to apply for a marriage license online through the Georgia Probate Record website.
Where to Obtain a Copy of Your Marriage Certificate
Once your marriage is recorded, you can obtain a copy of your marriage certificate from the Vital Records office.
Obtaining a marriage license is a crucial step in making your union official. By understanding the process, requirements, and fees involved, you can ensure a smooth journey toward your happily ever after. Remember to plan ahead and gather all necessary documents to make your application process seamless. Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials!
- Is there a waiting period for getting married in Georgia? No, there is no waiting period once you have obtained your marriage license.
- Can I apply for a marriage license online? Yes, you can apply for a marriage license online through the Georgia Probate Record website.
- Are proxy marriages allowed in Georgia? No, proxy marriages are not allowed in Georgia.
- What forms of identification are accepted for proof of age? Acceptable forms of identification include birth certificates, driver’s licenses, and passports.
- Can I change my name after getting married? Yes, Georgia law allows you to choose a new legal surname after marriage.