(Closed) Opinions on city hall or elopement…long story

posted 7 years ago in New York City
Post # 3
2905 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@arabesque0128:  Two of my close friends got married at City Hall for just that reason – she was losing her insurance, but could get on his insurance if they got legally married before the end of the month. So one afternoon, they took the afternoon off and – along with me and another friend of ours as witnesses – went to City Hall and got married. It was kind of fun! The groom picked up a bunch of bodega flowers for the bride to carry, the other witness and I snuck off to the gift shop to buy wedding-themed bubbles and then we all walked to Chinatown for dumplings and BYOB champagne afterwards. Both sets of their parents knew about it ahead of time and were fine with not being present. 

They went on to have a lovely traditional wedding a few months later, which everyone treated as if they were actually getting legally married that day. I don’t think they kept it a secret from the other guests, though I’m not really sure. All of our friends knew about it, though, and no one told us to keep it quiet, so I can only assume everyone knew. I’ve read things on WB about how people don’t get as excited for a wedding if the couple is already legally married, or they don’t bring gifts or whatever, but I don’t think this couple had that experience at all. 

Post # 4
2063 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I would just do the city hall thing and then have a big wedding later, but I’m a bit biased 😉

Post # 5
981 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

First, are you sure his workplace doesn’t offer Domestic Partner benefits? If it does, you can get on his insurance without being married. Ask him to check with his HR. 


If you do want to elope first though, my brother and SIL did a family only wedding at City Hall before their big shebang, and it was great. Really short and sweet and it is like the happiest place on earth, everyone is in love. 

Post # 6
1238 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

yeah, check with his employer first, but if I was in your shoes I’d do a small, simple City Hall thing and then keep on your original wedding plans.

Post # 7
2725 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I am in a similar position. The insurance through grad school was far too expensive so I have been without for a year. I’m looking for jobs now but I really can’t keep going without for much longer. I had an inner ear infection and dropped $250 at the dr recently. Thankfully, Fiance has good insurance so I will be on his soon. But insurance was a contributing factor (a minor one, but still a factor) in deciding to elope. 

I actually looked at NYC elopement packages when we first decided to go with this option…here’s what I had found





Post # 8
97 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

You should take care of your health insurance, that can drain your wedding fund pretty quick.

One option is, like you say, get married at city hall. You, FH and witnesses.

Then take your time to plan your wedding and have a symbolic ceremony at the wedding.  Your marriage would be your own little secret 🙂


You can also get the License at city hall, and then find a registered wedding officiant (like me!, http://www.knotbythesea.com)  and have a very nice elopement ceremony in any of New York City Hallmarks; OR you can have a BBQ Ceremony in the backyard….  with alittle creativity everything is possible.

A few months later you can plan your reception.

Best wishes… but yes… take care of your health insurance.

Post # 9
33 posts
  • Wedding: September 2013

I think you should go for it! Make it fun and enjoy it but still get yourself taken care of 🙂   When we started planning I thought I wanted this big traditional wedding but have realized that neither of us wants that and we don’t really have the funds or enough funds from family to make that happen.  We would much rather get him on my health insurance, put money towards buying a house and I would like to focus on grad school so I can get it all done earlier than later (Would’ve been posponing quite awhile for big wedding planning).

Whatever you decide, good luck and enjoy!

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