Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Step 86 - Check Marriage License Requirements
In order for a couple to get married, they need to pick up a marriage license. Marriage licenses can be obtained at a County Clerks Office and other specified municipal offices throughout the county. You can also download the forms from the county clerk website. Marriage licenses also can be obtained from the registrar of vital statistics.
Every state has their own procedures and forms that have to be filled out. Each state has their own fee structure and own marriage laws. Some states requires a witness over the age of 18 to come with you when you apply for a marriage license and some states don't. Most states issue a marriage license that is valid for 30 days but in addition generally there is a 72 hour waiting period before they can be used. The marriage license must be obtained from the county om the state from which you plan to marry.
Both parties must have a valid ID such as a driver's license, ID issued by DPS (Department of Public Safety), valid passport, resident alien card, or other government issued identification. A couple is authorized to be married by a licensed or ordained christian minister, priests, Jewish rabbis, persons of religious organizations who are duly authorized by the religious organization to conduct marriage ceremonies.
A couple is also authorized to be married by justices of the Supreme Court, judges of the court of criminal appeals, justices of the court of appeals, judges of the district, county, probate courts, judges of the county court at law, courts, of domestic relations and juvenile courts, retired justices and judges of such courts, justices of the peace, retired justices of the peace, justices and magistrates of the federal courts including mayors and licensed county clerks.
If either applicant is divorced, the divorce documents for the application in question must be brought in at the time of application. It is recommended both the bride and groom obtain the marriage license together in person, if for some reason one person is unable to appear, an affidavit of absent application is required.
Whether or not a bride changes her name after marriage is usually a decision discussed by her and her soon to be husband, whichever route the bride decides to take (change her last name to the husbands last name, use a hyphenated last name or stick with her maiden name) should be something the couple discusses with each other before filling out the marriage certificate before the wedding day. In the majority of weddings in the U.S.A. brides are more likely to change their last name to the husband's surname.
Also before one gets married the couple is recommended to get a medical exam, and get blood tests. Couples are generally not allowed to marry siblings, parents, children, and first cousins. Sometimes second cousins may be allowed to marry if it's determined a gene compatibility exist from a blood test. It's recommended to not change your name on many documents until after the couple is married. No one can change a document until the marriage is legal.
Xerox a copy of your wedding certificate. Make about 25 copies of the marriage certificate and keep the documents in a safe place such as an important paper drawer. Send a copy out with any name change request forms. It is recommended you start making name changes on all your papers beginning the week after your wedding or honeymoon focusing on changing your social security and driver's license first.
There are kits available online that can help you out to change your name after you get married. Some charge money, others are free. The more prevalent name change kits online are shown below.
Online Name Change Kit Websites
Listed below are places where brides need to arrange for name and address places. To get your name changed seems like it is a lot of work and it is, but it's very important. If you procrastinate or don't you are libel to get in trouble with the IRS, have problems with social security, later and damage your credit rating.
Bride Name and Address Places Needing Updating after Wedding
Equifax 1-(800) 685-1111
Experian 1-(888) 397-3742
Trans Union 1-(800) 916-8800
Department of Motor Vehicle(Driver's License, Registration, Other)
Employers (Employer's Records, Work, 401K)
Family and Friends
Insurance (Auto, Health, House, Other)
Investments (Stocks and Bonds)
Magazine Subscriptions/Book Clubs
Memberships (Clubs, Gyms)
U.S. Post Office
Utility Bills (Cable, Electric, Internet, Phone, Sewage, Water)
Voter's Registration Card
Whew, that's a lot of work. Once you have updated all your name and address documents, your honey owes you a nice dinner, drink, and dessert. You are now officially a Mrs. and congratulations!
See you on the other side!