So, you've planned a lovely wedding, stayed within your budget, and and now you're ready for the actual getting married part of the process. But how? Don't worry, Tulle Nation, I've got you taken care of. Each week this year, I'll be sharing all the information you need to know to get married in one state in the United States. Today, Louisiana!
Application, ID, and Residency Requirement: Louisiana has no residency requirements for obtaining a marriage license. There is a 72-hour waiting period before a wedding ceremony may be performed. In Orleans Parish, this period may be waived by Judges of the First or Second City Courts for Louisiana residents. If both bride and groom are nonresidents, the ceremony is performed in Orleans Parish and the wedding officiant is registered with Orleans Parish, the wedding officiant can waive the waiting period.
For a Louisiana marriage license, both parties require a Social Security number and a certified copy of a birth certificate or certified birth card, as well as a current driver's license, state ID or passport. For license applicants who are born outside the United States, an original birth certificate is required as well as an authorized translation by the foreign country’s consulate. Additionally, those who have been previously married must present a final divorce decree or death certificate of a deceased spouse.
Only one party needs to be present to apply for a license, but that person must bring all required documentation for both the bride and groom. Since all Louisiana marriage licenses are issued under the auspices of the parish clerk of court in each parish, the particular clerk's office where the applicants plan on obtaining a marriage license should be contacted for exact locations and hours, specific requirements and fee details before appearing for a license. A marriage license obtained in one Louisiana parish may be used for a ceremony in any other parish. Once all requirements are met, applicants receive two copies of the license, which they hand over to the wedding officiant.
Under 18: The legal age on consent in Louisiana is 18 years of age (in order to marry without the consent of other parties). Couples older than 16 but younger than 18 years old may get a license with the signed consent of both parents, legal guardian or an order from a judge of juvenile court. For females younger than 16, permission is limited to a written order by a juvenile court judge.
How Much a Marriage License Cost?: A marriage license costs $27.50 in Louisiana.
Officiants: Legally acceptable marriage officiants in Louisiana are judges, justices of the peace and clergy who have registered with the parish clerk of court to perform marriage ceremonies. Two witnesses at the ceremony are also necessary. After the ceremony, the officiant sends the two copies of the completed license showing a marriage took place to the local parish clerk of court. One copy is kept by the clerk of court, and one copy is sent to the Louisiana State Vital Records Office.
Couples are warned to make sure that the wedding officiant is legally authorized to pronounce the bride and groom man and wife. New Orleans law bans mystics, fortune tellers and palm readers from performing marriage ceremonies.
Valid: If the marriage does not occur within 30 days of the date the license was issued, the license is invalid and a new one must be obtained for an additional license fee.
Equality Rights: Same-sex marriage is not legal in Louisiana.
Name Change: Getting a marriage license with your new name on it does not mean your name has automatically changed.
Please Note: State and county marriage license requirements often change. The above information is for guidance only and should not be regarded as legal advice.
How many of you are getting married in Louisiana?