Marriage Frequently Asked Questions

1What do you need to apply for a marriage license?

Both parties must be present when applying for a marriage license.

Couples are required by law to read a handbook supplied by the Clerk and sign a statement acknowledging that they have read the handbook before applying for the license. This can be done the same day as applying for the license or you may download the booklet by following the link on this page and read it before your arrival.

Additionally, depending on which category applies to you, you will need to bring the following information:

Applicants 18 years of age or older:

  • Each party must show a valid driver's license or state ID, a passport or military identification.

  • Both parties must provide their Social Security numbers.

  • If either party has been previously married, the party must provide the day, month and year his or her last marriage ended.

Applicants 17 years of age must present EACH of the following:

  • Each party must show a valid driver's license or state ID, a passport or military identification.

  • Both parties must provide their Social Security numbers.

  • Certified copy of your birth certificate showing both parents' names.

  • Notarized Affidavit Consent of both parents or guardian. If one or both parents of a minor are deceased, a certified copy of the death certificate is required. If a parent has sole legal custody, the parent must present a certified copy of the court document granting sole custody.

2Is there a waiting period for the issuance of a license?
Licenses are issued immediately. The process normally takes no more than 30 minutes. However, unless the couple has attended an approved premarital preparation class there is a three-day waiting period before the license is effective and the marriage can take place. There is no waiting period if either party is an out-of-state resident.
3How do I find a premarital Course provider?

The Clerk of the Court does not give the course. We can give you names of registered providers in your area. Providers set their own fees and terms. For instance, some ministers will provide the course only for their own church members. Your Premarital Course Provider has to be registered with St. Johns County for you to receive a discounted license fee.

If you receive a certificate of premarital counseling it must state the course was a minimum of four hours, it was given within the past year, and state whether it was given by personal instruction or other means.

The certificate must be presented at the time of application for the license.

4Who may perform marriage ceremonies?

The following individuals may perform marriage ceremonies:

  • All regularly ordained ministers of the gospel, elders in communion with a church, or other ordained clergy.

  • All judicial officers, including retired judicial officers, Clerks of the Circuit Courts, and public notaries of this state.

  • Quakers" or "Friends," may perform marriages in the manner and form used or practiced in their societies.

5Who is a "regularly ordained minister"?
He/she is a minister who has been recognized in the manner required by the regulations of the respective denomination to perform marriage ceremonies.
6Are Blood tests required to get a marriage license?
No. Blood tests are not required in Florida.
7Does my ceremony have to be performed in St. Johns County?
A marriage license may be applied for and solemnized in any Florida county. You can only use a Florida license in the State of Florida.
8Do I have to have my divorce papers (or spouse's death certificate) to apply for a marriage license?
You must be sure the divorce is final, and you will need to know the date the judgment was signed. The application does require you to say when and how your last marriage ended (divorce, annulment, or death).
9How long is my marriage license valid?
Florida marriage licenses are valid for 60 days from the issue date. The marriage ceremony must be performed between the effective date and the expiration date on the license.
10May we get married by a captain aboard a ship?
Yes, if the captain is a notary and the ship is in Florida waters (within three geographic miles from the coastline) at the time of the ceremony.
11Can I be married in the Clerk's Office?
Yes. Deputy clerks are authorized and available during normal working hours, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to perform ceremonies. No appointment is necessary. The fee for this service is $30.00.
12How long does it take to get a copy of our marriage record and how much does it cost?
You will receive a certified copy of your marriage certificate within 10 days after the officiator returns it to our office to be recorded. There is no charge for this copy. However additional certified copies cost $3.00 each.
13Can a person marry someone to whom they are related?
Florida law prohibits a person marrying anyone to whom they are related by lineal consanguinity. Florida Statute 741.21 Incestuous Marriage prohibited - A man may not marry any woman to whom he is related by lineal consanguinity, nor his sister, nor his aunt, nor his niece. A woman may not marry any man to whom she is related by lineal consanguinity, nor her brother, nor her uncle, nor her nephew.
14Do one or both applicants have to be U.S. citizens?
No, there is no citizenship or resident requirement.
15Do we need a license to renew our vows? How do we go about doing this?
No. Speak to your clergyman, chaplain, or other advisor.
16Can an individual who is younger than 17 get a marriage license from the Clerk's Office?
No. By Florida Statute, a person must be at least 17 years of age.
17Now that I am married how do I change my name?
Take a certified copy of your marriage license to any agency or place of business that you wish to notify of your name change. For example, take your certified copy to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, Division of Drivers Licenses, to change your name on your drivers’ license.