Marriage License

Additional Information

All persons wishing to marry in Massachusetts must obtain a  marriage  license issued from a Massachusetts City or Town Clerk's Office of   their choice. The two parties to the marriage must jointly apply for the license in person at the Clerk's Office. A Justice of the Peace cannot  perform the ceremony until the license is made available.

Applying for a Marriage License
According to Massachusetts law, the two parties  to the marriage must  jointly file intentions to marry, and you may do  so with the city or town clerk  in any community in the state. If a  person is in the military, intentions may  be filed by either party,  providing one is a Massachusetts resident.

How long is the license valid?
A marriage license, once obtained, is valid for 60 days from  the  date intentions are filed and may be used in any Massachusetts  city or town. It  is not valid outside of the state.

Blood Test
Blood tests are no longer required.

License Availability
There is a mandatory three-day waiting period. While Sundays  and holidays  are included in the three days, the day the application is  made is not. (For  example, if you apply on Friday, your license will  be issued on or after  Monday.)

May we marry before the three days for a good reason?
Yes, if you can obtain a court waiver after filing  intentions. According to  MGL Ch. 207:30, if both parties are residents,  or non-residents, or one of  each, and they need to dispense with the  three days, they may do so by applying  to the judge of a probate or  district court to have the license issued without  delay, after filing  intentions with the clerk. Under extraordinary or emergency   circumstances, such as if the death of either party is imminent or the  female  is nearing the end of her pregnancy, an authorized request by a  an attending  physician shall suffice and the clerk can issue the  certificate without delay.

How do we obtain a waiver?
You should file your intentions first with any city or town  clerk. Then an  application for a waiver must be filed by both of you at  a probate or district  court. After a hearing, the court may issue a  certificate allowing the marriage  license to be issued, and the  marriage performed without delay.

Age Guidelines
A Massachusetts resident may marry if he or she is 18 years of  age or  older. A birth certificate may be required to show proof or age.  If either  party is under 18, a court order from a probate or district  court where the  minor resides must be obtained before the marriage  intentions can be filed.

Obtaining a Certified Copy of the Marriage Certificate

After your  wedding, the officiant completes and signs the  form, and returns it to the town  or city where it was granted. After  the license has been filed with the Registry  of Vital Records and  Statistics, you will be able to obtain a certified copy  from the town  or city for a nominal fee.

For More Information Please Visit the MA State Websites Listed Below:

- Getting Married in MA - Before the wedding:

- Marriage Certificates:

- MA Laws/Guidelines Regarding Marriage: