Marriage License Requirements
When it comes to getting married in Alaska, there are specific steps and requirements you need to be aware of. This guide will take you through the essential details you should know before tying the knot in the beautiful state of Alaska.
Alaska is known for its breathtaking landscapes and unique charm, making it an ideal location for couples seeking a memorable wedding experience. However, before you say “I do,” it’s important to understand the legal process of getting married in this picturesque state.
Marriage Application Process
Before you can exchange your vows, a marriage license must be obtained. Both parties are required to fill out an application form. If one party is out of town or out of state, contacting the court for instructions is necessary. The application should be submitted to the nearest Bureau office or Alaska Court based on the wedding location.
Eligibility and Identification Requirements
To get married in Alaska, both parties must be at least 18 years old. Valid picture identification, such as a driver’s license, is required. Additionally, a birth certificate may be needed to prove age. If either party has been divorced within the last 60 days, a certified copy of the divorce decree is necessary.
Divorce and Previous Marriages
If you or your partner have been married before, you’ll need to provide details such as the former spouse’s name, date and place of marriage, and the date and place the marriage ended. A copy of the divorce decree, signed by a judge, is required if the marriage ended within the past 60 days.
Waiting Period and Residency
Alaska has a three-business-day waiting period after the application is received, applicable to mailed or faxed applications. This waiting period ensures that the marriage license can be issued and the ceremony can be performed.
Covenant marriage is not a requirement in Alaska. Couples are not bound by covenant marriage laws.
Marriage License Fees
A marriage license in Alaska costs $60, which must be paid when the license is issued.
Proxy Marriages and Cousin Marriages
Proxy marriages, where someone stands in for a party, are not allowed in Alaska. Both parties must be present with two witnesses and an officiant for the ceremony. Cousin marriages, however, are permitted.
Common Law Marriages
Common law marriage is not recognized in Alaska.
Marriage Blood Test
No blood test or physical exam is needed to get married in Alaska.
Changing Your Name After Marriage
Obtaining a marriage license with your new name does not automatically change your name. For name changes, an online marriage name change kit can be used.
Marriage Age Requirements
Both parties must be 18 years or older to marry without parental consent. Those under 18 in the armed forces do not require parental consent but need military papers. Those aged 16 and 17 need a parental consent form.
Licensed ministers, pastors, judges, and other recognized religious leaders can officiate weddings. Anyone can perform a marriage ceremony in Alaska after obtaining a marriage commissioner appointment from an Alaska court.
Witnesses and Expiration of Marriage License
Two witnesses are required for the wedding ceremony. The marriage license is valid for three months from the date of issuance. The marriage must be performed within this period.
Obtaining a Copy of Marriage Certificate
To obtain a copy of your marriage certificate, contact the Bureau of Vital Statistics at the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.
Getting married in Alaska offers a unique and unforgettable experience against the backdrop of stunning natural landscapes. By understanding the legal requirements and following the necessary steps, you can ensure your special day goes off without a hitch.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I get married in Alaska if I’m not a resident? Yes, residency is not a requirement for getting married in Alaska.
- Are proxy marriages allowed in Alaska? No, proxy marriages are not permitted. Both parties must be present.
- Is there a waiting period for getting married in Alaska? Yes, there is a three-business-day waiting period after submitting the application.
- Can a friend or family member officiate the wedding? Yes, as long as they obtain a marriage commissioner appointment from an Alaska court.
- How long is the marriage license valid for? The marriage license is valid for three months from the date of issuance.