Pennsylvania Marriage License

If you're getting married in Pennsylvania, you must first apply for a marriage license. It'll cost you $30.50 to $90.00, and you'll have to use it within 60 days.

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Where to go

Where can I get a marriage license?

Pennsylvania marriage licenses are issued on the county level, at the Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court, by the Clerk of the Orphans' Court.

Where can I use it once I get it?

Your marriage license can be used throughout the commonwealth, regardless of which Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court you get it from.

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

Costs

How much is a marriage license in Pennsylvania?

A marriage license costs approximately $30.50 to 90.00 USD. The cost can vary between each Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court, as each county is allowed to set its own price.

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

Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Courts 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?

Both parties to the marriage must appear together when applying for a marriage license.

Waiting periods

Is there a waiting period to get a marriage license?

Pennsylvania 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 Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court.

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 Pennsylvania marriage license will expire 60 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 $30.50-90.00 application fee, wherein you'll be given 60 more days.

Residency requirements

What are the rules for residents and non-residents?

Whether you're a resident or non-resident of Pennsylvania, the rules are the same; you can apply for a marriage license anywhere in the commonwealth. You can then get married anywhere within the commonwealth.

Age requirements

How old must I be to get married?

You must be 18 years old (or above) to get married in Pennsylvania 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.

15 years old and below

You must obtain a court order from a Judge of the Orphan Court—in Pennsylvania—which will authorize the Clerk of the Orphans' Court to issue a marriage license.

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 Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court. They are as follows:

Provide one of the following:

  • Driver's License
  • Non-Driver Identification Card
    • Also referred to as a Driver's Identification Card or Non-Driver's License
  • Passport
    • Issued by any U.S. or foreign government body
  • Military Identification Card
    • Issued by U.S. Armed Forces
  • Military Dependent Identification Card
    • Issued by U.S. Armed Forces
  • Permanent Resident Card
    • Issued by USCIS
    • Also referred to as an Alien Registration Card, Green Card, and Permanent Visa
  • Consular Identification Card
    • Issued by a foreign (non-U.S.) government body

Provide one of the following:

  • Social Security Card
    • Issued by the SSA
  • W-2 Form
    • This verification document must contain your Social Security Number
  • Paycheck Stub
    • This verification document must contain your Social Security Number
  • Income Tax Return
    • This verification document must contain your Social Security Number

If unavailable, provide the following:

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

Name Change

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

Undergoing a marriage-related name change in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania (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 PA DMV directly.

Blood Tests

Am I required to get a blood test?

No, Pennsylvania 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?

If you've been previously divorced, or have had an annulment or dissolution, there are extra bits of information that you must provide the Clerk of the Orphans' Court when applying.

For your last divorce, annulment, or dissolution, provide the following:

Things you must bring

You will need to provide a copy of your divorce decree (aka divorce certificate). It must be an original or certified copy—not a photocopy. If your divorce certificate is written in a language other than English, then it must be translated into English. The Clerk of the Orphans' Court will not keep your certificate; it just needs to be examined for authenticity, and to confirm your previous marriage is over.

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

Pennsylvania 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?

If your previous marriage left you as a widow or widower, the Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court will need to solicit basic information regarding the death of your spouse. You only need to provide information for your last spouse who passed away.

Things you must bring

You must bring the original or certified copy of the death certificate for review. If the death certificate is written in a language other than English, then it must be translated into English. The Clerk of the Orphans' Court will hand the death certificate back to you once it's been looked over.

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