Missouri Marriage License

If you're getting married in Missouri, you must first apply for a marriage license.
It'll cost you $46.00 to $60.00, and you'll have to use it within 30 days.

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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.

Costs

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.

Residency

Are there any residency requirements?

There are no residency-related preconditions to get a marriage license. Missourians and nonresidents are welcome to apply.

Usage

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.

Application

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.

Attendance

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.

Age Requirements

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.

Waiting Period

When will I get my marriage license?

Your marriage license will be issued immediately. Afterward, you can marry at any time.

Expiration

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.

Identification

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.

Blood Test

Do I have to get a blood test?

You do not have to get a premarital blood test.

Divorced

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.

Widowed

Do I have to prove my spouse's death?

Just know the date your spouse died. Their death certificate isn't required.

Witnesses

Are witnesses required at my ceremony?

At least two witnesses must attend your marriage ceremony and sign your marriage license afterward.

Name Change

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.

License Return

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.

Marriage Certificate

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.

Common-law Marriage

Can I enter into a common-law marriage?

Missouri does not recognize common-law marriage established in this state or another.

Cousin Marriage

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.

Proxy Marriage

Can I marry-by-proxy?

You can't get married by proxy in Missouri. You must attend your own ceremony. No surrogates.

Civil Ceremony

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.

Office Locations

Where will you apply?

Comments

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27 Comments

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  1. Do both parties need to be present to apply for a marriage license?

    1. Hi Lori. Both must apply in person, unless one of you is active duty military, disabled, or incarcerated. If any of the latter is true, whoever's present can apply absentee on behalf of the missing.

    1. Hi Justin. You'll have to ask the judge to arrange that when your appointment is scheduled.

  2. Can I get marriage license and married all in one day at the courthouse?

    1. Hi Emily. That's up to the judge. You'll have to schedule an appointment anyway, so inquire when you do so.

  3. Can a minor getting married be from out of state as well as long as a guardian is present with them?

    1. Hi Ann. Yes, out-of-state minors can marry if granted proper permission from their guardian.

  4. My car was broken into and birth certificate and SS card were stolen, and I'm getting married this week! Every Social Security Administration office says they are remote only right now, no walk-in option.

    Will the recorder allow me to prove my SS# another way? I have my current license and passport. Freaking out! 😭

    1. birth certificate and SS card were stolen

      A stolen social security card or number is serious business. Consider visiting the FTC's Identity Theft website to report what occurred.

      Every Social Security Administration office says they are remote only right now

      True. All 1600+ field offices are closed due to COVID-19 precautions.

      Will the recorder allow me to prove my SS# another way?

      You needn't show your social security card. Just document the number on the application. Even if you had to show it, you could arrange for another document, such as a pay stub or tax return. It's not required anyway.

  5. Can the officiant of our ceremony also serve as a witness?

    1. Hi Nick. Your officiant can't serve as a witness. You'll need two additional people. They can even be strangers.

  6. I live in Indiana but my fiance is in prison in Missouri. Do I have to get the marriage license in Indiana?

    1. Hi Jacob. You must get your marriage license from the state the marriage will take place in. Residency is irrelevant. If the marriage will take place in Missouri, get it there. Otherwise, get it from Indiana.

  7. Do I need my ssc or can I just use my birth certificate and driver's license.

    1. Hi Kendra,

      1. You don't need to show your social security card.
      2. You only need to show your birth certificate if you're a minor.
  8. So do I mail the absentee application to my bf that is incarcerated to have him fill it out and get it notarized? Or do I have to have someone take the application up to the facility?

    1. Hi Bria. You or your boyfriend can contact the warden to make arrangements. They may already have the paperwork on hand.

  9. My bf is incarcerated and we want to get married tho he doesn't have a ss card, id or bc because was lost. Does the affidavit act as id for absentee? Could I make an appointment for judge to come to the jail for marriage? Where do i get the applications?

    1. he doesn't have a ss card

      He doesn't need the card, just the social security number. If he doesn't have one, then mark that on the application.

      id or bc because was lost

      If the warden can't provide photo ID, then mark on the application that identification isn't available. The birth certificate is only required for minors.

      Could I make an appointment for judge to come to the jail for marriage?

      Work that out with the warden.

      Where do i get the applications?

      The county recorder of deeds office.

  10. If we don't have two witnesses can the judge or "court" produce them for us?

    1. Hi Michelle. Although the judge can produce witnesses, it doesn't mean that they will. You'll have to arrange that with the judge.

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