Final thoughts on the All-Important Marriage License – The term “marriage license” was thrown around quite often in the previous two blogs, so I thought it would be a good idea to do a separate and shorter entry on it – just so we make sure not to leave anything out.
After all, nothing I have already written about matters without this all-important piece of paper.
As you have figured out by now, a marriage license is a document issued by a state authority that authorizes a couple to marry. It is a requirement for ceremonial marriages only. The state in which a couple gets married holds the record of that marriage, but the “union” itself is recognized across the country.
A marriage license costs $60, but the fee is waived if the applicants complete a premarital-education course and provide the county clerk with a certificate of completion one year before filing for an application.
The following people can get a marriage license in Texas:
- Adults – a person 18 or older.
- Minors with parental consent, court order or dissolved earlier marriage.
The following people cannot get a license to marry in Texas:
- Related applicants – ancestor, sibling, uncle/aunt, niece/nephew, first cousin, stepchildren, son/daughter.
- Currently married applicants – unless it’s a couple wishing to renew their wedding vows.
- The recently divorced – must wait 30 days without good cause. Divorced spouses can remarry any time.
To apply, a couple must appear at the county clerk’s office, provide proof of identity and age, complete and sign the application form, and take an oath. If one applicant is absent, the other can apply on their behalf by providing the clerk with a notarized “absent-application” affidavit and proof of identity and age.
A marriage license can still be obtained in the rare instance that both applicants can’t appear before the county clerk, but they must be members of the U.S. armed forces and stationed in another country for combat purposes or another military operation.
An important note is that marriage licenses can and do expire if the ceremony has not been held within 89 days from its issuance. In most cases, a couple wanting to get married in Texas must apply for a marriage license at least 72 hours before the ceremony but no more than 89 days before the ceremony.
If you have any further questions, please give our team at Nelson Law Group a call. We are here to help!