Legal Logistics Simplified

Of course there is the aspect of wedding planning that has to do with the actual wedding, but what about the part that has to do with the actual marriage?  That’s right, what do you need to know about the legal side of getting married?  We’ve broken it down into three parts: the license, the officiant, and changing your name.


Depending on where you live and are getting married, you may have different procedures for getting a marriage license.  Most commonly, you’ll need your IDs, an officiant, and at least one witness in order to get legally married.  You can go to the county clerk’s office to get the form (which varies in cost depending on where you are).  The license can be taken with you to the wedding, but has to be returned within a certain window with all parties having sign and the form notarized.  Waiting periods for the form to go through may vary and you may not automatically be provided with your own copy.


If you are having one of your friends marry you, you are going to want to make sure that they are a valid officiant for the ceremony.  The most common way to go about this is to make them an ordained minister online.  Here is one site that will walk you through the process for your state.

Changing Your Name

Many brides nowadays don’t change their names, or hyphenate their names.  And if they do, many do it before the wedding, so that they don’t have to worry about it after the fact and so that their marriage license reads their new name.  You can do it online here, though there are many other sites that can help you with the forms.

We recommend getting all of these things in order before the wedding so that you can truly enjoy the days after instead of filling out forms.  Also, remember that you probably have a number of people you can ask if you have any questions about the process.  And then you’ll be an expert for your friends in the future!