Common-law marriage has diverse names, from "marriage in fact", "marriage by repute and habit", "informal…
Where to Apply
Where can I get a marriage license?
You can apply for a Missouri marriage license at any county's recorder of deeds office. You'll be assisted by the recorder of deeds, or "recorder" for short.
How much is the marriage license fee?
A Missouri marriage license costs between $46 and $60, depending on the county. The vast majority of counties charge $51.
Note: The license fee may or may not include a complementary certified copy of your marriage certificate.
Are there any residency requirements?
There are no residency-related preconditions to get a marriage license. Missourians and nonresidents are welcome to apply.
Where can I use my marriage license?
Your marriage license is good for use anywhere in Missouri, but can't be used in another state.
What information will I have to fill out?
The marriage license application requires your name, birth surname, date and place of birth, residence, total prior marriages, how and when your last marriage ended, race, highest education level completed, and social security number.
What if I don't have a social security number?
If you don't have a social security number, the recorder will have you sign a statement attesting to that fact.
What if I can't apply in person?
Submitting a notarized absentee affidavit application is reserved for adults aged 18 and over who are active duty military, incarcerated, or disabled. Only one party to a marriage can apply absentee. Whoever applies in person must submit the other's application.
Are you active duty military?
Your commanding officer must confirm your active duty status on the affidavit verification form.
Are you incarcerated?
The warden, sheriff, or proper prison official must confirm your incarceration on the affidavit verification form.
Are you disabled?
A qualified medical official must confirm you're disabled under the Americans with Disabilities Act on the affidavit verification form.
What are the age restrictions for marriage?
Aged 18 and over?
If you're an adult aged 18 and over, you don't need parental consent to marry.
Aged 16 and 17?
If you're 16 or 17 years old, you can marry anyone below the age of 21 with the written consent of your custodial parent or legal guardian.
Aged 15 and under?
Minors under the age of 16 can no longer marry, effective July 13, 2018.
How can a parent or guardian grant consent?
Parents or guardians can grant consent in person or by completing a notarized parental consent form provided by the recorder's office. You may be charged $1 per consent form signature.
When will I get my marriage license?
Your marriage license will be issued immediately. Afterward, you can marry at any time.
How long will my marriage license last?
Your marriage license will remain valid for 30 days after issuance. Return any unused license to the recorder's office. Report a lost or destroyed license.
What ID should I bring?
Bring valid unexpired government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license, passport, state-issued ID card, or military ID card.
What ID should minors bring?
In addition to regular photo ID, minors should bring a certified copy of their birth certificate.
What ID should consenting parents and guardians bring?
Consenting parents, bring photo ID and proof of custody if divorced. Consenting guardians, bring photo ID and guardianship papers.
Do I have to get a blood test?
You do not have to get a premarital blood test.
Do I have to prove I'm divorced?
Just know the date your divorce was finalized. You don't need to bring your divorce decree.
Do I have to prove my spouse's death?
Just know the date your spouse died. Their death certificate isn't required.
Are witnesses required at my ceremony?
At least two witnesses must attend your marriage ceremony and sign your marriage license afterward.
How do I change my name due to marriage?
Changing your name because of marriage can be done using your marriage certificate, but it isn't automatic. You must mail the proper forms to the proper institutions. You can use of an online name change service to assist. Start with your social security card before other institutions.
When does my marriage license need to be sent back?
Your marriage license must be returned to the original recorder of deeds for recording within 15 days after your marriage ceremony. Failure to return is a misdemeanor offense.
Where can I get a copy of my marriage certificate?
You can purchase a certified copy of your marriage certificate for roughly $9–12 from the recorder of deeds office where you applied for your marriage license.
Can I enter into a common-law marriage?
Missouri does not recognize common-law marriage established in this state or another.
Can I marry my first cousin?
Missouri law prohibits marriage between first cousins.
Is marriage among other family members allowed?
You can't marry an ascendant, descendant, sibling (half or whole blood), aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or first cousin.
Can I marry-by-proxy?
You can't get married by proxy in Missouri. You must attend your own ceremony. No surrogates.
How can I get married in a civil ceremony?
Employees at the recorder of deeds don't perform civil ceremonies. However, they can direct you to a judge who may solemnize your civil marriage by appointment. The fee varies per county. Some judges offer the service for free.