Las Vegas Weddings
Marriage License Rules
One reason why Las Vegas weddings have become so popular is because the Las Vegas wedding laws are so easy and because it takes very little time to get a wedding license. Basically, if you are over 18, have $60 and a driver’s license with you, you can quickly and easily get a Nevada marriage license. Because of these simple wedding requirements, over the past 50 years the Las Vegas wedding industry has grown rapidly. In fact, in 2009, more than 92,000 marriage licenses were issued by the Clark County Clerk’s office. The Clark County Marriage License Bureau used to be open every day, 24 hours a day. However, in recent years they have slightly cut back their hours of operation. They are now open from 8:00 a.m. until midnight, 365 days a year.
The $60 fee can be paid for with cash, a cashier's check, money order or major credit card like MasterCard, Visa, American Express or Discover. However, be aware that there is a $5 charge for credit card transactions. The only debit cards that are accepted must also be usable as a credit card.
If you are from a foreign country, or you want to be able to register your marriage in your home state, you may also wish to purchase a certified copy of the Affidavit of Issuance of Marriage License. Read on for more specifics about getting married in Las Vegas.
Where to Get Your Las Vegas Wedding License
In researching my Amazon Kindle book, Your Guide to a Fabulous Las Vegas Wedding, (available through this link or by downloading onto your Kindle) I discovered that many people are nervous about getting married in Las Vegas because they are unsure where to go or what to do. This book makes it easy because it contains information about a number of chapels, as well as about where to get your wedding dress, rent a limo, buy a wedding cake, pick up floral bouquets and it answers most of the other questions you might have. This city has worked hard to gain the title, "Wedding Capital of the World," and they make it as easy as possible.
In order to get your wedding license you have to go to the county clerk’s office. The Clark County Marriage License Bureau is located at 201 E. Clark Ave., in Las Vegas, NV 89155. Their phone number is (702) 671-0600. If you are staying in Las Vegas, the easiest way to find the office of the marriage license bureau is to ask a cab driver to take you. They all know where it is and can quickly take you to get your license. Most cab drivers will wait for you, and return you to your hotel or take you directly to a chapel.
After leaving the county clerk’s office, you may be married nearby in a civil ceremony at the Clark County Office of Civil Marriages. It is located at 309 S. 3rd St., Las Vegas, NV 89101. Their phone number is (702) 455-3474. They are not open as late as the county clerk’s office, and you must have an appointment. However, they are open 365 days a year. In addition, there are so many charming chapels in the city that you have many options. Many chapels do not require an appointment and, for those that do, it is often possible to get an appointment the same day.
More Las Vegas Wedding Requirements
The legal requirements for obtaining a marriage license in Las Vegas are the same, whether you are a U.S. citizen or a citizen of another country. There are no specific citizenship requirements for foreign visitors to be married in Nevada. However, citizens of other countries should check with their own country to see if there are any specific requirements which need to be fulfilled in order for the marriage to be accepted in their country.
Both the man and woman must appear in person at the county clerk’s office, and both of them must be at least 18 years old. They cannot be first cousins. (Currently, no gay marriages are allowed in the state of Nevada, although there are chapels where gays can take part in a commitment ceremony. No license is required for a commitment ceremony.)
When you apply at the county clerk’s office, you must bring identification with you to prove your name and age. The ID that you use must be the original, not a copy, and it must contain the applicant’s photograph. Nevada will accept a driver’s license, official state ID card, foreign government ID card or driver’s license, a passport, a military ID card, and similar identification. Your marriage license and certificate will be prepared with your legal name written exactly as it appears on the ID that you present. If the marriage bureau clerk reasonably believes that the applicants are at least 25 years old, they will not need to prove their age. However, they will need proof of their identity.
If the applicants are 16 or 17 years old, they can still be married with the consent of their parents or guardians. The parents or guardians can appear in person, with a copy of a birth certificate and other documents or identification, as necessary, to prove that they are the parents or legal guardians of the couple applying for the license. It is also possible for them to give their consent in a notarized statement, along with the appropriate documentation. In this case, contact the county clerk’s office to be certain that you are providing all the documentation necessary to satisfy the marriage bureau clerk.
If the applicants are under the age of 16, they can still get married, but only with a court order. In this situation, they will need to have photo ID’s, along with the original court order allowing the marriage to take place.
Fees for a License
As mentioned above, as of 2013, a Las Vegas Wedding License costs $60. You can pay by cash, cashier’s check, and money order, or use an American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa credit card. However, there is an additional $5.00 service charge for credit card transactions. You cannot use a debit card, unless it can also be used as a credit card. Prices go up from time to time; therefore, it is advisable to check the current price, in particular if you are planning to pay in cash.
If one of the applicants is divorced, they must provide the date, city and state where the divorce was finalized. You do not need to provide your divorce decree. If one of the applicants has been widowed, they must provide the date, city and state of their former spouse’s death. You do not need to provide the death certificate.
There is no waiting period to get married in Las Vegas, and the applicants do not need a blood test. Once you have received your wedding license, it is good for one year from the date it was issued. You may be married anywhere within the state of Nevada.
More Information on Las Vegas Wedding Laws
To learn if any laws or regulations have been changed, you may want to call the county clerks office at (702) 455-0000 or check the Clark County Marriage License Bureau website.
Las Vegas is a wonderful place to have a wedding. It is uncomplicated, quick, easy and, depending on your wishes, can be either elegant and elaborate or quite simple and inexpensive.
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