Requirements for Applying for a Marriage License
SAVE TIME: You will save time when you come to apply by completing the Marriage Application. There is no online registration. You should print out the forms and bring them with you when you came to apply. The information must still be entered into our system.
Residence: If either of the applicants is a resident of the State of Georgia, the marriage license may be obtained from the Probate Court in any county in the State. It is not required that the license be obtained from the county of the legal residence of either applicant. If neither applicant is a resident of the State of Georgia, the license must be obtained from the Probate Court in the county in which the ceremony is to be performed.
Blood Tests: As of July 1,2003, premarital blood tests are no longer required under Georgia law.
Proof of Age: Both applicants must be 18 years of age or older to apply for a marriage license without parental consent. Proof of age (birth certificate, driver’s license, baptismal certificate, certificate of birth registration, selective service card, court record, passport, immigration papers, alien papers, citizenship papers, armed forces discharge papers, armed forces identification card, or hospital admission card containing the full name and date of birth) must be presented by every applicant who does not appear to the judge or clerk to be at least 25 years of age. If either applicant is 16 or 17 years of age, a license may be issued only with the written consent of the parent or parents of the underage applicant. No license may be issued if either applicant is under the age of 16. As of July 1, 2006, the pregnancy of a female applicant no longer authorizes the issuance of a license to a 16 or 17 year old without consent.
Proof of Dissolution Of Prior Marriage: If either applicant has been previously married and the marriage was dissolved by divorce or annulment, a copy of the decree of divorce or annulment must be presented at the time of application. (Applicants who have been married and divorced more than once need only provide a copy of the decree dissolving the last previous marriage.)
Fees: The fee for a marriage license is $77.00, which includes the application fee of $61.00 [O.C.G.A. §15-9-60(k)(14)], a fee of $15.00 paid to the State Children’s Trust Fund [O.C.G.A. §15-9-60.1], and a fee of $1.00 for recording the marriage with the Department of Human Resources, Vital Records Division [O.C.G.A. §31-10-21(f)]. In addition, there is a $10.00 charge for the certified copy of the marriage license, which is mailed to the applicants after recording, and a $10.00 fee for the certified copy of the license application for the Social Security Administration. The total for these services is $77.00 payable at the time the application is made.
However, if the couple presents to the court at the time of making the application a certificate of completion of a premarital education program pursuant to Code Section 19-3-30.1, the $40.00 application fee is waived, and the total for all services will then be $37.00, instead of $77.00. In order to qualify for the reduced fee, the premarital education program: must have been completed within 12 months prior to the date of the application; must have been taken by the couple together; must have included not less than six hours of “instruction involving marital issues, which may include but not be limited to conflict management, communication skills, financial responsibilities, child and parenting responsibilities, and extended family roles”; and must have been provided by (1) a professional counselor, social worker, or marriage and family therapist licensed in Georgia, (2) a psychiatrist licensed in Georgia, (3) a psychologist licensed in Georgia, or (4) an active member of the clergy when in the course of his or her service as clergy or his or her designee, provided the designee is trained and skilled in premarital education. Couples must present a notarized Certificate of Completion when applying for the marriage licence. The court has a certificate if the provider does not have a form.
Mailing: If the certified copies are to be mailed to the couple, there will be a mailing fee of $1.00.
Getting Married at the Courthouse
The judge of the probate court does not perform weddings, except by appointment and after a meeting with the judge about the ceremony.
Magistrates in the Magistrate Court often perform weddings. However, it is best to make an appointment in order to assure that a magistrate is available to perform the wedding. There may be times when there is no judge or magistrate in the courthouse available to perform a wedding. Do not assume that there will be a judge or magistrate to perform your wedding when you come in to obtain the license. The telephone number for the Magistrate Court is 478-621-6505.