Michigan Marriage License

If you're getting married in Michigan, you must first apply for a marriage license. It'll cost you $20.00 to $30.00 (based on residency), and you'll have to use it within 33 days.

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Where to go

Where can I get a marriage license?

Michigan marriage licenses are issued on the county level, at the County Clerk Office, by the County Clerk.

Where can I use it once I get it?

Your marriage license can be used throughout the state, regardless of which County Clerk Office you get it from.

Your license is only valid within the borders of Michigan. For instance, you can't get a marriage license from the neighboring state of Minnesota, then use it here—and vice versa.

Costs

How much is a marriage license in Michigan?

There are two different price points:

Price 1: For residents

For residents of Michigan, a marriage license costs exactly $20.00 USD. This price is established by state law and doesn't change no matter where you buy your license.

Price 2: For non-residents

For those who are not residents of Michigan, a marriage license costs exactly $30.00 USD.

I've changed my mind; can I get my money back?

County Clerk Offices will not issue refunds for unused marriage licenses.

Even if you're still waiting to receive your license after submitting an application (see waiting periods), you will not be reimbursed after you've already paid.

Attendance

Must we both be present when applying?

Only one party to the marriage must be present when applying for a marriage license.

Waiting periods

Is there a waiting period to get a marriage license?

Michigan does have a three (3) day waiting period before getting a marriage license. Your license will be issued three days after your application is received by the County Clerk Office.

This wait time includes business days only; Saturdays and Sundays don't count.

How soon can I get married after getting a license?

You can get married immediately after you receive your marriage license. There is no post-issuance waiting period to abide by before you can have your marriage ceremony.

Expiration dates

When will my marriage license expire?

Your Michigan marriage license will expire 33 days after it's been issued. If you don't get married before time runs out, you'll have to start over and apply for a brand new license.

I need more time; can I get an extension on my license?

Extensions are not provided for expired (or near expiring) marriage licenses. If your license completely expires you must reapply and repay the same $20.00 or 30.00 (for non-residents) application fee, wherein you'll be given 33 more days.

Residency requirements

What are the rules for residents and non-residents?

There are multiple residency rules, only of which some may apply to you. They are as follows.

Residency rule 1

If both of you are residents of Michigan, you must apply for a marriage license in the county of either residence. You can then get married anywhere within the state.

Residency rule 2

If one of you is a resident of Michigan, you must apply for a marriage license in the county of residence. You can then get married anywhere within the state.

Residency rule 3

If neither of you are residents of Michigan, you must apply for a marriage license in the county where the marriage will take place. Your marriage ceremony must be held in the same county where you applied for your marriage license.

Age requirements

How old must I be to get married?

You must be 18 years old (or above) to get married in Michigan without parental consent.

16 to 17 years old

You must obtain the consent of at least one parent or legal guardian. Even if one parent/guardian objects, you can still obtain a marriage license (over their objection) as long as the other provides consent.

Identification requirements

What forms of ID must I bring?

There are multiple types of identification to consider bringing when applying for a marriage license at your local County Clerk Office. They are as follows:

Provide one of the following:

  • Driver's License
    • Issued by any U.S. state or territory
    • Must show your current address
  • State-issued Identification
    • Issued by any U.S. state or territory
    • Must show your current address

Provide the following:

  • Birth Certificate
    • Original or certified copy
    • Non-English document must be translated into English
    • Non-English document must be notarized

If foreign-born, provide one of the following:

  • Passport
    • Issued by any U.S. or foreign government body
    • Non-English document must be translated into English
    • Non-English document must be notarized
    • Must be accompanied by U.S. Form I-94
  • Passport Card
    • Issued by the U.S. Department of State
  • Permanent Resident Card
    • Issued by USCIS
    • Also referred to as an Alien Registration Card, Green Card, and Permanent Visa
  • Temporary Resident Card
  • Employment Authorization Document
    • Issued by USCIS
    • Also referred to as an EAD, EAD Card, Form I-766, and Work Permit
  • Certificate of Naturalization

Provide the following:

  • Social Security Number
    • Issued by the SSA
    • You don't need to bring you card; just know your number
    • It's understood that non-U.S. citizens are unlikely to have a SSN

If unavailable, provide the following:

  • Affidavit of No Social Security Number
    • If you don't have a Social Security Number, you must sign an affidavit stating so

If foreign-born, unacceptable documents (for the sake of clarity):

  • Baptismal Record
    • Original or certified copy
  • Certificate of Birth Registration
    • Not to be confused with a "birth certificate"; merely states a birth has been registered
  • Souvenir Birth Certificate
    • Also referred to as a Hospital Birth Certificate, is a keepsake, novelty item issued by the hospital

Name Change

How do I go about changing my name due to marriage?

Undergoing a marriage-related name change in the state of Michigan (or any other state) involves notifying various government and non-government institutions. You'll typically start with updating your Social Security Card, driver's license, passport, and other federal/state/non-governmental institutions.

Keep in mind, your name does not automatically and legally change just because you get married or obtain a marriage license or marriage certificate; you must go through the steps of updating your identification documents, whether it's through an online name change service, or contacting the SSA, State Dept. and MI SOS directly.

Blood Tests

Am I required to get a blood test?

No, Michigan does not require you, nor your partner, to get a blood test as a condition for getting a marriage license.

Divorced

What if I've been previously divorced?

You are not required to provide any documentation, dates, or knowledge of any previous marriage, annulment, or dissolution. Having said that, if you are divorced, it must be final (or absolute).

What if I'm separated from my spouse, but not yet divorced?

Michigan law forbids a marriage license be granted to anyone who is currently married or separated from their spouse. You must have your divorce finalized, or marriage annulled, before getting married again.

Widowed

What if I'm currently a widow or widower?

You will not be asked to provide details (e.g., date, location, proof) of your prior spouse's death.

Witnesses

Are witnesses required to attend my marriage ceremony?

Michigan statutes require at least two (2) witnesses be present at your marriage ceremony.

Whomever officiates your marriage must log the contact information (typically name and address) and signature of each witness.

Note: The officiant does not count as a valid witness.

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