WHERE TO APPLY
Wisconsin residents must apply before the County Clerk of the county in which one or both have resided at least 30 days prior to the date of application. Marriage may be performed in any county in Wisconsin.
If both applicants are out-of-state residents, the license must be issued in the county where the ceremony will be performed.
When applying for a marriage license, Wisconsin law requires a 5-day waiting period, not including the day of the application, before a license can be issued. The day of application does not count towards the waiting period. In some instances, a waiver may be granted for the waiting period due to unusual circumstances. If granted, the cost of the waiver is $25.00. A waiver form must be filled out.
The license is valid for 30 days after date of issuance. If 30 days should pass a new application must be completed
Certified birth certificates are required. The souvenir birth document given by a hospital is NOT a legal document and is UNACCEPTABLE. Be prepared to provide accurate and complete names of parents to include birth sur name (name before marriage). A current passport may also be used in place of a certified birth certificate.
Persons under the age of 16 may not marry. Persons age 16 and 17 are required to provide both parent’s or legal guardian’s notarized written consent to marry. The consent forms are available in the County Clerk’s Office.
SWORN STATEMENT THAT THE APPLICANTS ARE NOT CLOSELY RELATED
Applicants may not be closer in relationship than 2nd cousins. First cousins may marry if the female applicant is 55 years of age or older or if one of the applicants presents an affidavit signed by a licensed physician stating that the applicant is permanently sterile. The sworn statement is part of the application form.
It is not lawful for any person to marry again until six months after judgment of divorce is granted. A signed Judgment of Divorce from the last previous marriage must be presented to the County Clerk. Copies of final Divorce Judgments can be obtained from the Clerk of Court in the County in which the divorce occurred.
A certified copy of a death certificate must be presented to the County Clerk if your last previous marriage was terminated by death.
PROOF OF RESIDENCE
A current driver’s license with a current address is the best proof. If this is not available, each applicant must provide proof of current address, such as a checkbook, utility bill, income tax record, military papers, student record, medical or dental bill. If the applicant is not a US Citizen then a current passport is needed. If the passport has expired then the applicant will need to apply for an extension.
SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBERS
Applicants must provide their social security numbers if one has been assigned to them.
If one of the parties to the marriage does not understand or speak English, they must bring a translator with them. Any documents not in English must be translated.
LOCATION AND DATE OF MARRIAGE
Applicants should be prepared to provide the date of the marriage and the correct spelling of the officiant’s name, as well as his/her business address and phone number. The applicants should also know the county name and municipality (city, village or town) where the ceremony will take place.
If applicants are unable to apply for their marriage license during office hours (see below for office hours) a time outside of office hours must be prearranged with the Clerk. There is an added fee of $25.00 for issuing a marriage license outside of office hours.
The license fee is $75.00. These fees are payable by check, money order, credit card (Mastercard, Discover, American Express and some Visa) or cash on the date of the application. No refunds are given. Fees may vary from County to County.
Marriage License Information Brochure (PDF 15K)