Getting Married In New Jersey
How to Apply for a Marriage License
Planning your marriage and wedding celebration in New Jersey? Here are some important items you’ll need to know about making your marriage legal, as well as additional resources.
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During the current Pandemic situation, can I still get married? Are marriage licenses still being issued?
Those seeking a marriage license should apply for one in the New Jersey municipality where either party resides. The license is valid throughout New Jersey.
However, due to the public health emergency please contact your local registrar first to determine if they are still open for business at this time as they may be closed to protect the health of residents and workers against COVID-19.
Under Executive Order No. 107, all New Jersey residents have been directed to stay at home until further notice and may only leave under certain circumstances to prevent the spread of COVID-19. All gatherings of individuals, such as parties, celebrations, or other social events, are prohibited, unless otherwise authorized by the Order.
However, the Governor has announced an executive order that allows individuals to use videoconferencing technology for the licensing process and the marriage ceremony. The requirement that a marriage or civil union be solemnized in the physical presence of an officiant and two witnesses can be satisfied through the use of live audio-visual technology, provided certain conditions are met.
The order also suspends the 72-hour waiting period between the license application and issuance, extends the period that a license is valid from 30 to 90 days, and waives fees imposed for the issuance of a second marriage or civil union license if the original has expired.
Reference: COVID-19 Guidelines For Getting Married In New Jersey (as of 4/15/20 and 5/1/20)
According to the State of New Jersey, Department of Health & Senior Services, State Bureau of Vital Statistics and Registration, here’s what you need to apply for a marriage license:
Please print out and complete the marriage license application form (see below at bottom of page). You may also get an application form at the Local Registrar’s office.
Do not sign the marriage application form before going to the Local Registrar. You must sign the application, while under oath, in the presence of the issuing authority.
Requirements for entering into a Marriage:
For two persons to establish a Marriage in this State, it shall be necessary that they satisfy all of the following criteria:
Where to apply:
Please contact the Local Registrar to determine if license applications are handled during business hours or by appointment.
Required documents when applying for a marriage license:
* Social security number is required by law for US citizens and will be kept confidential.
Any documents in a foreign language must be accompanied by a certified English translation.
Requested additional documents (these documents are helpful but not required):
A copy of your birth certificate to establish your parents’ names and related birth information.
If you are divorced, have had a previous civil union dissolved, domestic partnership terminated or have had a civil union annulled, please bring the decree(s) or the civil annulment documents.
If your former spouse/civil union or domestic partner is deceased, please bring the death certificate.
After you apply:
There is normally a 72-hour waiting period before the license is issued (which has been waived during the pandemic). The waiting period begins when the application is filed with the Local Registrar. There is no 72 hour waiting period for a remarriage; however, you must bring a certified copy of your existing marriage.
The marriage license application is valid for six months from the date accepted, unless the Registrar has given prior approval to extend the validity of the application to a maximum of one year.
Only one marriage license may be granted from a marriage application. If the license expires before being used, a new application must be made and another $28 fee remitted.
The only exception to this requirement is in the case where a civil and religious ceremony are to be performed on the same day. In this case, the Local Registrar will photocopy the marriage application, marking one “A” and one “B”, and issue the corresponding marriage licenses, marking them “A” and “B” as well. One copy will be used for the religious ceremony and the other for the civil ceremony.
For individuals who are currently in a marriage in New Jersey or are in a marriage in another state or country there exists the option to reaffirm your relationship/vows by registering a Remarriage.
In order to apply for a Remarriage the couple must provide proof of their existing marriage, meet the requirements for entering into a marriage in New Jersey and follow the guidelines above to completing the license application.
The process for a Remarriage License are the same as for the Marriage License, except that the Remarriage License must be accompanied by the proof of existing marriage and once the application is filed there is no 72 hour waiting period before the license is issued.
Who can perform marriages in New Jersey?
Each judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, each judge of the federal district court, United States magistrate, judge of a municipal court, judge of the Superior Court, judge of a tax court, retired judge of the Superior Court or Tax Court, or judge of the Superior Court or Tax Court, the former County Court, the former County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, or the former County District Court who has resigned in good standing, surrogate of any county, county clerk and any mayor of former mayor not currently serving on the municipal governing body or the deputy mayor when authorized by the mayor, or chairman of any township committee or village president of this State, and every minister of every religion, are hereby authorized to solemnize marriages or civil unions between such persons as may lawfully enter into the matrimonial relation or civil union; and every religious society, institution or organization in this State may join together in marriage or civil union such persons according to the rules and customs of the society, institution or organization.
Can Internet ministers perform my marriage ceremony?
Yes. It is recommended you check the Internet website for the particular Internet ministry to verify that their ministers are authorized to perform marriage ceremonies.
Search For Your Local Registrar by County
Provided by by Office of Vital Statistics and Registry. For information on registering, amending or obtaining copies of vital records please call (866) 649-8726 or for individuals within the 609 area code, call (609) 292-4087