Getting married is one of the most exciting times of your life — finding a dress, searching for venues, like banquet hallscouples love, planning the ceremony — but there are important things to know before tying the knot. Planning the wedding is a huge step, but walking down the aisle and saying “I do” is not the only step that makes you a legally married couple. There a certain legal requirements for getting married. Here is a list of the legal aspects that need to be completed once you decide to get married.
- The Legal Documents needed for marriage: Before getting married you must obtain a marriage license. This can be collected from your county clerk and you will most likely have to pay a fee. This would provide you the license needed to get married, as long as, the requirements are met. When it is time for the big day, the officiant must file out your marriage certificate with the applicable recording agency in your county. This must be completed so that the marriage is documented.
- Be Prepared for a Blood Test: Not every state requires a blood test but in some areas it is a mandatory premarital physical exam or blood tests are required. This is to test for different diseases such as rubella, tuberculosis, sickle-cell anemia. HIV/AIDS are not a mandatory testing but states will offer information regarding were they can obtain that type of test is necessary.
- Obtaining the Marriage License: You can get the marriage license at any clerk office, however, some states require you applying to the county clerk’s office in which you want to be married. Typically, there is a small fee associated with the with the marriage license and may take a few days to process. Another thing to be aware of is that states may imply a waiting period. The purpose of the waiting period is in case couples change their minds. This waiting period can be waived under certain circumstances such as someone being deployed, or arrive to town close to the wedding date.
- Officiating the Wedding: Whoever you choose to officiate the wedding must be qualified within that country/state. In some situations, people may be granted temporary legal authority to perform the marriage ceremony by a court clerk or a judge. Non-religious ceremonies can be conducted by a justice of the peace, court clerk or a judge. Religious ceremonies are typically conducted by a member of the clergy.
- After the Ceremony: Overall, most states do not have legal requirements after the ceremony. Most of the legal aspects are handled before the ceremony. However, some states differ, so it is important to check with the state. After a few weeks, you should expect to see your marriage certificate.
Before walking down the aisle be sure to consider the 5 tips listed above. This will ensure that your wedding ceremony is legitimate and you are not blindsided by any of the legal aspects after your wedding day. Most of these items and forms can be filed out rather quickly but it is important to do them correctly and in a timely order.