Tennessee Marriage License

If you're getting married in Tennessee, you must first apply for a marriage license. It'll cost you $93.50 to $107.50, and you'll have to use it within 30 days.

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Where to go

Where can I get a marriage license?

Tennessee 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 Tennessee. For instance, you can't get a marriage license from the neighboring state of Kentucky, then use it here—and vice versa.

Costs

How much is a marriage license in Tennessee?

There are two different price points:

Price 1: Default cost

A marriage license costs approximately $93.50 to 107.50 USD. The cost can vary between each County Clerk Office, as each county is allowed to set its own price.

Price 2: Cost after taking a Premarital Preparation Course

If you're willing to undergo a Premarital Preparation Course that the state of Tennessee recognizes, a marriage license costs approximately $33.50 to 47.50 USD. This is a savings of up to $60.00; a 64% markdown below the regular fee.

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

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

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?

There are actually multiple wait times for different situations. We'll cover them all below.

18 years old and above

There is no waiting period to get a Tennessee marriage license. You'll get your license the same day you apply for it.

16 to 17 years old

Tennessee 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.

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 Tennessee marriage license will expire 30 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 $93.50-107.50 application fee, wherein you'll be given 30 more days.

Residency requirements

What are the rules for residents and non-residents?

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

Age requirements

How old must I be to get married?

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

16 to 17 years old

You must obtain the consent of both parents or legal guardians. It's not sufficient if only one parent/guardian acquiesces—both must agree.

15 years old and below

You must obtain a court order from a Juvenile Court Judge—in Tennessee—which will authorize the County Clerk 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 County Clerk Office. They are as follows:

Provide one of the following:

  • Driver's License
    • Issued by any U.S. state or territory
  • State-issued Identification
    • Issued by any U.S. state or territory
  • 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
  • Birth Certificate
    • Original or certified copy
  • Permanent Resident Card
    • Issued by USCIS
    • Also referred to as an Alien Registration Card, Green Card, and Permanent Visa

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

16 to 17 years old

Provide the following:

  • Birth Certificate
    • Original or certified copy

Name Change

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

Undergoing a marriage-related name change in the state of Tennessee (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 TN DDS directly.

Blood Tests

Am I required to get a blood test?

No, Tennessee 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 County Clerk when applying.

For all previous divorces, annulments, and dissolutions, provide the following:

Things you must know

You must know the date your divorce, annulment, or dissolution took place.

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

Tennessee 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 County Clerk Office will need to solicit basic information regarding the death of your spouse.

Things you must know

You must be able to specify the date your spouse died.

Things you must bring

You don't need to bring any documentation to substantiate the death of your spouse. Simply providing rudimentary details regarding your spouse's death is sufficient when filling out your application.

Solemnization

Who's allowed to marry me?

Tennessee law recognizes several types of officiants who may legally officiate (i.e., preside over) your marriage. They are as follows:

Clergymen

The following clergymen, whom are part of any church or congregation within the state of Tennessee, can preside over your marriage.

  • Imam
  • Minister
  • Preacher
  • Priest
  • Rabbi
  • Spiritual Leader

Nonreligious officials

Finally, the following secular officiants can solemnize the rights of matrimonial contract.

  • County Clerk
    • Current
  • County Executive
    • Current or retired
  • County Legislative Member
    • Current or retired
  • County Mayor
    • Current or retired
  • Municipal Mayor
    • Current
  • Chancellor
    • Current or retired
  • Judge
    • Current or retired
  • Bankruptcy Judge (Federal)
    • Current
  • Magistrate Judge (Federal)
    • Current
  • Governor
    • Current
  • Speaker of the House
    • Current or retired
  • Speaker of the Senate
    • Current or retired
  • County Commissioner
    • Retired
  • Quarterly County Court Member
    • Retired

Witnesses

Are witnesses required to attend my marriage ceremony?

Tennessee does not require witnesses attend your ceremony. This is a convenience, as most other states do require at least one or two witnesses be present.

Can (or should) I still have witnesses attend?

While you can still have one or more witnesses be present, they won't serve any official purpose or role (during or after the ceremony) in concert with the officiant.

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