Post # 1
This is more out of curiosity than anything…. it is 3am in the morning and I’m 8 hours into this never ending work shift…..
My FI had one of his “too cute to handle” moods today and as he was saying goodnight on the phone, he suggested we go get the marriage license next week. I guess he was doing some research online and figured out you can get it as early as 90 days before your wedding. We are 76 days away.
At what point are you actually married by law? I keep hearing different things so I figured I’d ask here.
How long did you wait to get it? We are sooooooo tight in time with my FI working 6 days a week and me working at night…. I can see why he would want to get it so early…
Post # 2
As far as I understand, the license allows you to marry legally, but until a government appointed officiant signs it and turns it in, you aren’t legally married. For us, we had to give it to our priest at the rehearsal, and then he signed it and turned it in after the wedding. The license just gives you the potential to be married 😉
We only had one opportunity to get ours, so we got it about a week before the wedding. Took five minutes. Maybe your FI’s worried about red tape and it taking longer or something.
Post # 3
CoffeeBeanKate: Well, the clerk’s office here in Los Angeles is extremely understaffed and for what I read, it never takes anything less than 2 hours to get it, and that is if you get it the same day!
Red tape? What would be red tape?
Your explanation makes perfect sense actually. 🙂
Post # 4
MrsPiggles: Yeah, in a big city I’d definitely err on the side of getting it early! We got married in my home town, which is pretty small, so it wasn’t a problem. My friend got hers in Monterey and I think it took her longer…maybe a couple hours?
It’s cute your FI wants to have it, though!
Post # 5
CoffeeBeanKate: Yeah he has his moments I guess haha. What did you mean by red tape? Anything to be worried about?
Yeah I’ve read some people will take 2+ even 3 hours! That basically means my FI is going to have to take an entire day of work off which isn’t ideal….
Post # 6
MrsPiggles: Oh, sorry. It’s not anything to worry about. It’s just an expression for beaurocratic nonsense like waiting at the courthouse for a marriage license for two hours, when it’s only a single piece of paper to fill out 🙂
Post # 7
Make sure you check into your specific county/state’s policies on how long they’re good for. Ours, I think, was only good for 30 days. We went to the DC courthouse after work to get it one day, and it took longer to find parking than it did to get the license. I think these are hit or miss for how long they take.
Post # 8
MrsPiggles: we just got ours in San Francisco and we were able to make an appointment online ahead of time. Super easy!!! Also, if it’s easier to go to another county and get it, you are totally fine so long as you have a public marriage.
Post # 9
CoffeeBeanKate: That’s good to know! Phew! I thought there were extra steps that could delay the paperwork! It is already bad enough I have to translate all of my paperwork from Spain just so we can get married in the same church! haha.
JiminyCricket: Oh we both checked 😉 it would be valid till mid October which is more than enough time. And I also read that parking surrounding the Clerk’s Office is ridiculous so thanks for the reminder!
julesbeeb: We could drive up to Ventura county…. I checked their website and we can fill out the paperwork online and just go in to pick it up. Unfortunately we would still have to wait in the horrible lines. Thanks for the idea!
Post # 10
We just turned in a paper, they gave us the license, less than 5 minutes total. But yeah it’s legal after the officiant and bride and groom all sign the license.
Post # 11
It took like 5 minutes to fill out the form, 10 minutes to wait in line, 10 minutes to sign everything and get the license.
But the marriage license is just a license to get married – you aren’t actually married until you sign the official marriage documents. At our ceremony we signed the register and also a document from the church. They gave us the document from the church but we had to order and pay for our official marriage certificate after. It’s only needed if you plan to change your name – it’s used as proof.
Post # 12
In Maryland (Baltimore City specifically), you can get your license anywhere from 6 months to 48 hours before you are married.
DH went to the clerk’s office to get it about a month before hand just to be on the safe side. He said it took 5 minutes.
Then we gave it to our officiant the week before our wedding to hold for safe keeping.
She signed it at our ceremony and mailed it in.
You are considered officially married once the officiant signs the license and mails it in.
Post # 13
MrsPiggles: PS. make sure you get your license in the county/city where you will be getting married, not where you live.
Post # 14
MrsPiggles: In my state there’s a 3 day wait. We filled it out and got it a few days later. No waiting at the clerk’s office, though.
Post # 15
MrsPiggles: Which county are you getting married in? My understanding is the license needs to be from the county where the wedding is taking place, regardless of where you live. So you can’t just drive to the county where the process is easiest, unfortunately!