This information was prepared to help you plan your Vermont wedding. We have tried to answer the questions couples most often ask. If you have any questions that are not answered, contact your town clerk or the vital records of the Vermont Department of Health.
How do we get married in Vermont?
Before your ceremony, you will need to get a Vermont marriage license. The state of Vermont no longer requires pre-marital blood tests.
Where do we get a marriage license?
If both the bride & Groom are from VT. residents, you may go to the town clerk in either town of residence. If just one of you is a VT resident, you must go to the Clerk of the resident’s hometown.
What if we are not Vermont residents?
The first thing you should do is decide where in VT you want to get married. This is important because out of state residents must get their license in the county where they will be married. Any town clerk in that county can issue the license.
How much does a marriage license cost?
A Vermont marriage license costs $20.00. There is a cost of $5.00 if one wants a certified copy of the license.
How old must we be to be married in Vermont?
You may get married in Vermont if you are 18 years old. If you are at least 16, but under 18, you will need either a parent or guardian’s consent. Your parent or guardian should accompany you to the town clerk’s office to sign an affidavit giving you permission to marry. The affidavit is on the back of the marriage license and is a legal part of the license. If you are under the age of 16, you may not get married without a certificate from a Probate or District Court Judge in your county of residence giving you permission to marry. No one under the age of 14 may marry in Vermont.
Are there any other marriage restrictions?
Anyone under guardianship cannot marry without guardian consent. Vermont does not allow the marriage of relatives. Relatives include mother, father, grandparent, sister, brother, grandchild, aunt, uncle, niece, and nephew. You cannot get married in Vermont to avoid laws of another state where you intend to continue residing. If you need further clarification, contact your town clerk or the Vermont Department of Health, vital records Unit.
What information do we need to purchase a marriage license in Vermont?
You must know your legal town of residence and your place and date of birth; You will also need to know your parents’ names, including your mother’s maiden name, and the states where your parents were born. Vermont law requires that at least one of you must sign in the presence of the town clerk, certifying that all facts are correct; however, most town clerks prefer to see both of you in person before issuing your license to marry, as the law requires that they satisfy themselves that you are both free to marry under Vermont laws. They may legally ask to see documented proof of your statements, for example, birth certificates, divorce decrees, etc. A Vermont marriage license cannot be issued through the mail.
What statistical information will I need to provide?
There is a small portion of the license that is detached and used by vital records for statistical information. For this portion, you will need to provide information about your race, the highest grade you completed in school, the number of times you have been married, and how your previous marriage(s), of any, ended. This information does not become part of the marriage certificate.
What if either of us has been married before?
If you are a widow or widower you are free to marry. You will be asked the date your spouse died. If you are divorced, you may remarry if you have received the final court decree dissolving your marriage license.
How soon can we marry once we have our license?
There is no waiting period in the state of Vermont. A couple may marry on the same day they purchase their license.
How long is our marriage license valid?
Your marriage license is valid for 60 days from the date of issue. The last date your license can be used blocks 16D of your license. The marriage license fee is non-refundable. If you decide to marry after the expiration date, you will need to apply for a new license.
Where can we get married?
A Vermont marriage license is valid only for a marriage performed in Vermont. If you are a resident, you may be married anywhere in the state. If you are not residents of the state, you must be married in the county where your license was issued.
Who can marry us?
A judge, Justice of the Peace or a member of the clergy recognized by the state of Vermont. By obtaining a temporary certificate of authorization from the probate court in the district where the ceremony will be performed, a Priest, Minister, or Rabbi from another state can marry you in Vermont.
What do we do with the license?
You must deliver the license to the person who will conduct your wedding ceremony before the marriage can be performed. After the ceremony, the person who performs the ceremony (officiate) will complete the sections concerning the date, place, and officiating information, and sign your license. It must then be returned by the officiate to the town clerk’s office where it was issued within the ten (10) days, so that your marriage may be officially registered. It is not a complete legal document, useful for passports, Social Security, etc., until it has been recorded in the town clerk’s office where it was purchased.
Do we need witnesses?
Vermont law does not require witnesses. If you are planning a religious ceremony, check with your church or synagogue to see if religious tenets require witnesses for your ceremony.
How do we get a copy of the marriage certificate?
Here are two ways to obtain a copy of your marriage certificate. When you apply for your marriage license, you pay $5.00 and make arrangements with the town clerk to mail you a certified copy of your certificate that has been returned and registered. This may be the most convenient way if you know what your correct mailing address will be after the ceremony.
The second way is to request a copy from the town clerk where you obtained your license two (2) weeks or more after the ceremony; or from the Vermont Department of Health, vital records Unit, six (6) weeks or more after the ceremony. The fee is $5.00. It is best to put your request in writing or apply in person. What you will receive is a copy of the original certificate embossed with the town or state seal. The certified copy issued by either the town or state is the accepted copy of all legal documents, (e.g. social security, passport, insurance).