Engaged? Congratulations! This simply infographic will show you everything you need to know about getting a marriage license in Arizona.
What kind of Marriage License do I need?
There are two marriage license forms in the state of AZ: traditional (just called a marriage license) and a covenant marriage license (called a covenant marriage license). A traditional marriage license is all you need to get married. A covenant marriage license allows you to get married just the same, but is harder to break and is intended to make divorce more difficult.
You need premarital counseling in order to get a covenant license and your counselor will need to notarize a statement that says:
- “the parties were advised about the nature and purpose of a covenant marriage;”
- “the parties were advised regarding the limited reasons for ending marriage by legal separation or divorce; and”
- “the parties were given a copy of the pamphlet, Covenant Marriages in Arizona, published by Arizona Office of the Courts (AOC).”
Take the notarized document with you to your marriage license appointment. Your local UPS store likely has a notary on staff. Call ahead to see if they are in.
Getting a regular license? That’s great. It doesn’t make you any more or less married than the covenant license and it take less paperwork. Bring an ID and your spouse. You must both be present to obtain a license. Plan an hour – hour and a half for this excursion (we all how quickly the government works). And make an appointment. You’ll take priority over walk-in couples.
How soon should I get a Marriage License?
You can get your marriage license up to a year before your wedding. They are valid for 12 months after they are issued by the state. We recommend getting your license 6 weeks in advance of the wedding date. You can make an appointment in most Arizona counties, which is nice because appointments take preference over walk-ins. Now, be sure you both go to the appointment. You both have to show ID and sign some paperwork.
You can use your license the same day, but say yourself the headache and get it in advance. To make a marriage license valid it must have signatures from the individuals looking to get married, two witnesses, and the person who performed the ceremony. The bottom portion of the license is then mailed into the Clerk of the Superior Court by the person who performed the ceremony. So officiants forget to take the bottom, so you can mail just the same. It must be mailed within 30 days of the ceremony to be valid.
What do I need to bring?
- Bring your spouse – you both have to be there to get a license
- Valid government ID for each of you.
- Application form – click here to find the right one
- Divorce decree, if applicable
- Notarized premarital statement, if getting a covenant license
- Cash, check or money order
- If you’re under 18 – keep reading, you’ll need additional documents
Can I get Married if I’m under 18?
Yes, you can, but you must also be at least 16. Under 16? Sorry charlie – not in the state of AZ. You have to jump through some extra hoops if you’re under age. First, you’ll need more documentation: a signed consent form from your parents or a certified copy of your emancipation order. You’ll also need a certified copy of your birth certificate to prove your age as well as a driver license or other government-issued ID. Also, it’s imperative to note that your intended spouse cannot be more that three years older than you. They’ll check your IDs to be sure.
- either a certified copy of an Emancipation Order, OR a notarized Clerk’s Office parental consent form along with the front and back of your parent(s) or legal guardian’s identification, or have your parent(s) or legal guardian accompany you and present proper identification and sign the parental consent form in the presence of the clerk issuing your marriage license; AND
- a certified copy of your birth certification; AND
- one of the following government issued picture I.D.’s is required: a) current driver’s license; b)state or military I.D. card; c) current passport; d) or other government issued picture I.D.
- Remember, the younger applicant’s prospective spouse cannot be more than 3 years older than the younger applicant.