How to Get Marriage Licenses in Florida | Full Guide

florida marriage license
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You’re engaged, congratulations! Whether you’re a resident of the state of Florida or not getting a marriage license is quite easy all thanks to technology.

Over the years, technology has revolutionized our world and daily lives. Modern technology has paved the way for multi-functional devices like the smartwatch and the smartphone.

Computers are increasingly faster, more portable, and higher-powered than ever before making it easy for us to order our Florida marriage license from the comfort of our homes. 

What is a Marriage License?

According to Wikipedia, A marriage license (or marriage licence in Commonwealth spelling) is a document issued, either by a religious organization or state authority, authorizing a couple to marry. The procedure for obtaining a license varies between jurisdictions and has changed over time.

Sometimes people confuse a marriage license with a marriage certificate, they are both different.

Again Wikipedia says, A marriage certificate is an official statement that two people are married. In most jurisdictions, a marriage certificate is issued by a government official only after the civil registration of the marriage.

In other words, a marriage license lets two individuals get married, but a marriage certificate proves they did it.

Can you get a Marriage License Online in Florida?

Some counties have an online application. Some have a Florida marriage license application PDF that you will print and bring with you when applying for your marriage license; other counties will require you to fill out their online application and submit it before your appointment.

How Long is a Marriage License Good for Florida?

Florida marriage licenses are valid for 60 days from the date of issuance. The marriage license form must be returned to the Clerk’s Office for recording within 10 days after the marriage is performed.

How much is a Marriage License in Florida?

The fee for a marriage license is $93.50. Florida residents who have completed a premarital preparation course and can provide completion certificates will only be required to pay $61.00 and the three (3) day waiting period will be waived.

How long does it take to get a Marriage License in Florida?

Florida Residents have a 3 day waiting period but after they attend a 4-hour premarital course, the three-day waiting period will be waived. Each applicant must provide proof of course completion when applying for the marriage license.

The course provider must list the hours completed for the counselling and the letter must be presented on the company/church letterhead.

All area course providers must be registered with the County Clerk of Courts per Florida Statute 741.0305 (5).

Non-residents of Florida do not have a waiting period. However, all couples that apply for a marriage license must read the Family Law Handbook.

Where do I go to get a copy of my marriage license in Florida?

To get a copy of your marriage license, simply send a mail, visit this address, call

Department of Children and Families

Division of Vital Statistics

P. O. Box 210

Jacksonville, FL 32231-0042

Ph: 904.359.6955

or visit this website 

https://www.vitalchek.com/marriage-records/florida/florida-vital-statistics

http://www.floridahealth.gov/certificates/certificates/marriage/index.html

How to fill out a Marriage License in Florida?

if you’re filling out a hard copy of the marriage license, you have you be very careful to avoid mistakes.

For more information, visit Instruction to fill Florida marriage license information sheet – YouTube

Where do I get a Marriage License in Florida?

A marriage license may be obtained from any county in the State of Florida, regardless of where you live or where you’re getting married, and may be used to be married in any county within Florida.

Step-by-step guide on how to get a Marriage License in Florida? 

#1

Your first step is to verify if the county you wish to get your marriage license from requires you to make an appointment.

Every marriage license is issued by a county court judge or clerk of the circuit court, you can apply for your license at any county’s clerk office or county’s website.

Note: If either applicant is under the age of 18 years but at least 16 years of age, a birth certificate and proof of identification is required, along with a notarized written consent form of the parents or guardian. Applicants under 16 years of age must obtain a determination from a County Court Judge.

#2:

If you filled the pre-application marriage license form you will have to provide valid identification documents such as a driver’s license, state ID card, or valid passport or I-94 card in-person.

Both parties will also have to provide their Social Security numbers but do not need to provide their Social Security Cards. Finally, a certified copy of your birth certificate and the best part, no blood test is required.

#3:

If you have been previously married, the date of your divorce or the date of your spouse’s death must be supplied. If the divorce or spouse’s death occurred within the past 30 days, a certified copy of the divorce decree or death certificate is required

#4:

Pay the license fee. After filling the form and providing all necessary identification, you pay the license fee which in Florida is $93.50.

The license fee can be reduced to $32.50 if both parties can show proof that they took the premarital course, and for residents of Florida, the three-day wait period will be waived. The course can be taken online.

Note: All area course providers must be registered with the County Clerk of Courts per Florida Statute 741.0305 (5)

#5:

Get married. Congratulations, now you have your marriage license all that’s left is to get married. Don’t forget Florida marriage license expires after 60 days. After your wedding remind the officiant/notary to register the marriage certificate within 10 days.

Usually, a pre-addressed envelope will be provided with the form so it can be mailed easily. This is not the responsibility of either spouse, but check in with the officiant to ensure the speedy processing of your marriage.

After the Marriage Records is received, the Clerk’s Office will mail a certified copy to the newly-married couple. At this point, your marriage is official.

All couples applying for a marriage license in Florida are asked to read the Florida Family Law Handbook. You can’t skip this step as you will be asked if you have completed this task in your marriage application.

Florida marriage license is quite easy and affordable, with the correct documents your license could be gotten that same day and valid from that very day.

A tropical place like Florida is definitely a place to elope to, plan a destination wedding, or if you are a resident plan an outdoor wedding.

Frequently Asked Questions about Marriage License in Florida

Who may perform Marriages?

Any ordained or licensed clergy, notary publics, and justices of the peace.

When must a license be filed?

A license must be certified and filed with the Clerk’s office within 10 days of the ceremony.

Do we need to get a license to renew our vows?

No.

Do we have to make an advance appointment for a license and civil marriage ceremony?

No. Licenses are issued, and it performed marriages without appointments during normal business hours.

Can the Clerk’s Office perform the marriage?

Yes. Deputy clerks can perform a civil marriage ceremony; the fee is $30.00.  Please note you cannot perform the marriage at the time the license is obtained if the three-day waiting period applies.

Do one or both of the marriage license applicants have to be American citizens?

No. There is no citizenship requirement.

How long does it take to get a license?

When the application is filed, the license is issued immediately. The process normally takes no more than 15 minutes. However, there is a three-day waiting period before the license becomes valid for use if both parties are Florida residents and both parties have not completed a state-sanctioned marriage preparation course.

What are the age restrictions for obtaining a marriage license?

To obtain a license without parental consent, both of the applicants must be at least 18 years of age.  An applicant that is at least 17 years of age may marry with the written consent of his/her parents or legal guardian consent, but only if the other party is not more than two years older than the younger party.

Can an individual 16 years of age or younger get a marriage license from the Clerk’s Office without parental permission?

No, the Clerk’s Office or County Judge cannot issue a marriage license to applicants 16 years of age and younger.

Do both parties have to be present at the clerk’s office to apply for a license?

Yes. However, exceptions can be made only when there is a good cause in extreme circumstances.

Final Thoughts

This full guide on how to get a marriage license in Florida is comprehensive and subject to change. Be sure to go through it for proper guidance.

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