Marriage in North Dakota

Are you getting married in North Dakota? If so, there are a few requirements you will have to fulfill so your marriage will be recognized as legal. ID is required in all cases; this can be your driver's license or a certified copy of your birth certificate. You need not live in North Dakota to receive a marriage license. You and your future spouse must both apply for the license in person. There is a cost of $35, which is payable only in cash. There are no medical tests you will need to take. While some places have a waiting period before the marriage license is valid, North Dakota law considers a license to be valid immediately upon receipt.

Compared to some other states, North Dakota has relatively few requirements that a person must meet before receiving a marriage license.


Divorced persons must present a certified copy of the Divorce Decree. This document proves the divorce was legal and protects both members of the new marriage from charges of bigamy. If a previous spouse has died, the state requires a death certificate.
This document does not have to be certified; it is intended to prove that both members of the marriage were legally single when married.

Persons who have not yet reached 16 years of age will not be granted marriage licenses, whether or not they have been given parental consent. Unlike other states, court orders for marriage between underage persons are not given. However, persons between 16 and 18 years of age may receive licenses if they can produce a notarized statement proving parental consent. If a person has a legal guardian instead of a parent, the guardian may give consent.

Common law marriage is not recognized in North Dakota. This is when a couple lives together as man and wife without the benefit of a legal marriage. Cousins are not allowed to marry in North Dakota. Same sex marriages are not allowed.

Who Will Officiate?

A ceremony may be performed by any priest or any ordained minister; the church to which a clergyman belongs makes no difference. However, within five days of the ceremony, the officiating minister must file the certificate of marriage by giving it to the county judge. Both spouses must also receive marriage certificates.

Follow these easy steps to ensure that your marriage is legally binding and recognized under North Carolina state law.

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