Colorado Marriage License Requirements
The first thing you and your partner need to do is complete a form. To make things easy consider downloading it online before you go to the county clerk’s office.
After that, you need to visit a county clerk’s office in person to show your IDs. You need an appointment for your visit and it’s best to make it in advance. “The appointments can fill up,” reveals Hunter. “Go to the county clerks online calendar at least a few months in advance to schedule your appointment.” This is even more important if you are coming in from out of state and only have a few days to get it done. Again, keep in mind your appointment needs to be within 35 days of your legal marriage date .
In Colorado, you can make your appointment at any county clerk’s office no matter where you live or where your wedding venue is. You don’t even have to be a resident of Colorado, which makes the state an ideal spot for destination weddings.
After your license has been reviewed you will be mailed your application and marriage certificate. You must sign them in the state of Colorado and then mail them back within 63 days. “Colorado also does not require that you have any witnesses to sign your marriage license,” Hunter says.
Discuss The Couple’s Overall Vision For The Ceremony
Sit down and walk through the ceremony outline with the couple, as each will want something different. With religious ceremonies, there’s a reasonably set pattern and format, but with secular weddings, the couples sometimes want to throw out the entire playbook. It’s key to talk to them upfront so you can understand their vision for the ceremony.
Once you’ve figured out all of the deadlines, write them down. Mark up a calendar to outline when you need to have your documents by, when fees need to be paid, and when you need to have the couple’s marriage license turned in.
Colorado Marriage License 101
If you’re looking for a way to seal the deal that’s free from red tape, Colorado is an ideal state to host a wedding.
To start with, applicants don’t need to be Colorado residents to obtain a marriage license, though it is required that they marry within the state of Colorado once on is obtained.
Witnesses are not required and couples may have an officiant such as a current and retired judge, a public official with powers of solemnization, clergy, Indigenous tribe officials or they may officiate their own marriage in what is known as a self-solemnization. Just bring your ID, fill out some paperwork with the county clerk, and you’re on your way!
But whether you’re opting to marry yourselves or doing things in a more traditional way, here is what you need to include on your marriage license checklist:
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What Is A Wedding Officiant
A wedding officiant is the leader of the wedding ceremony. They work with the couple to prepare materials for the ceremony and perform the marriage on the day-of.
According to expert Natasha Anakotta, an officiant can expect to spend “anywhere from six months to a full year before the ceremony” preparing and officiating each wedding. “This allows enough time for ordering credentials and official documents, completing minister registration, working with the couple on the ceremony creation, practicing, and working out the logistics and details,” Anakotta says.
Meet the Expert
Natasha Anakotta is the Outreach & Operations Manager at American Marriage Ministries .
The upsides of getting a loved one or family acquaintance to officiate your wedding are plentiful: It’s more intimate and personal than having a stranger officiate, it’s less expensive than hiring somebody, and it’s a very special way to include them in your big day. Read on for a complete guide to officiating, from getting ordained to writing the actual ceremony.
What Do You Need To Perform A Wedding In Colorado
Once you’ve determined what you need, simply log in to your account and order the materials from our online catalog. Based on the feedback we’ve received from our ministers in Colorado, we recommend ordering a Classic Wedding Kit. Although ministers are generally not required to register in this state, it’s possible the county clerk will ask you to present proof of your ordination before they will accept the legality of the ceremonies you’ve performed. Also keep in mind that the couple may like your ordination credentials. As requested by the county clerks, please try to place your order well in advance of the wedding to avoid complications.
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Improper Or Prohibited Marriage
It is a misdemeanor in Colorado to attempt knowingly to violate the procedures and requirements for a marriage. C.R.S. 14-2-113.
If the marriage were bigamous, it would be a Class 6 felony for the person who is still married, C.R.S. 18-6-201 and a misdemeanor for the other party. C.R.S. 18-6-202.
A marriage which is prohibited is void, and subject to annulment pursuant to C.R.S. 14-10-111.
How To Get Ordained In Colorado To Officiate
You’ve arrived at the Colorado state marriage laws page! Officiating a wedding ceremony can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Using our resources, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to marriage laws in Colorado. By following the outline below, you can ensure that the big day goes off without a hitch. Among other things, we’ll explain how to become a wedding minister, how to marry someone, and how to make sure the marriage is legal in Colorado.
Here are the basic steps ministers must follow to officiate a wedding:
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Ask The Couple What To Wear
Each wedding is different in terms of style and level of formality. If they say, “wear what you want, think about your attire in the context of your role as the wedding ceremony officiant, not as a wedding guest. Avoid wearing prints and opt for neutral colors. To minimize distractions, make sure your hair won’t blow into your eyes and avoid flashy jewelry or a smartwatch.
Colorado Self Solemnization Ceremony Ideas To Consider When You Solemnize A Marriage
Just because youve chosen to self solemnize doesnt mean your Colorado self solemnization ceremony needs to be completely different than it would otherwise be.
You can still say your vows to each other. You can still share your first kiss. All of the things that would otherwise happen at a non self solemnized ceremony can still happen with a self uniting marriage.
The only difference is you dont need an officiant present at your ceremony. It really is that simple. The nice thing about this type of self uniting marriage? You can get creative with what you do during your Colorado self solemnization ceremony.
Ive included a few ideas below to get you started! There are so many options when youre no longer expected to incorporate typical, traditional wedding standards to your self solemnization elopement ceremony.
In asking yourselves can I officiate my own wedding, youve opened yourself up to some pretty epic self uniting ceremony options.
So if you want to self solemnize, go for it, whether or not you have guests present! In fact, out of all the couples I work with, more than half of them choose to have a self solemnization or self uniting marriage ceremony.
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What Are The Wedding Officiant Registration Requirements In Colorado
You may be surprised to hear this, but wedding officiants in Colorado are not required to register with any government office prior to performing marriage. The Colorado State Government has no laws requiring officiant registration or office dedicated to the registration of wedding officiants.Colorado does have a law that specifies who can solemnize marriage. This includes all ministers, including online ordained ministers of American Marriage Ministries. However, there are no laws, offices, or procedures requiring officiants to register with any government office.Simply put, once you are an online ordained minister of American Marriage Ministries you immediately have the legal ability to officiate weddings anywhere in Colorado. If you have been asked to officiate a wedding in Colorado, with AMM today!Ordination with AMM is fast, free, and simple. To learn more about getting ordained in Colorado with AMM, check out our page.
Practice Your Public Speaking
Before the ceremony rehearsal arrives, take time to practice reading through your script. Make notes about where to pause for effect and practice saying words that might get stuck on your tongue. This is a great way to get used to what you’ll be saying to minimize how emotional you may be on the wedding dayyou’ll be more familiar with the lines, so hopefully, you won’t get too choked up. Read through the script in front of a mirror to practice making eye contact with the couple and the audience. In addition, make sure the couple practices their lines and vows in advance, too.
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How To Plan A Colorado Wedding
It feels good to check things off your list, doesn’t it? we think so too. Now we can go back to the fun part.
Depending on where you are in the Centennial State you’re going to be faced with different concerns as far as the best season to choose for your reception, access for out-of-town guests and so on. But in general, here is what you should keep in mind when planning the ideal Colorado wedding.
Check Your Local Laws
Because you will be fulfilling the legal duty of certifying a marriage license as a wedding officiant, you need to familiarize yourself with the local laws anywhere you will be performing a wedding ceremony. Check the wedding officiant laws by state, and also research at the county and city level to see what the different rules and regulations are for marriage officiants. In some states, practically anyone can perform a wedding ceremony in others, it can be next to impossible to get legal authorization to perform marriages unless you are the minister at a church with an active congregation. Most states in the US have fairly relaxed requirements for who can legally perform a wedding ceremony, but certain states like West Virginia, Massachusetts, and Arkansas have laws that make it extremely difficult to obtain authorization to perform marriages and prior registration and approval from the court is required.
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Always Start With Research
You cant perform a legal marriage unless you are authorized by the state to do so. Every state has different descriptions, classifications, and laws that regulate who can perform a wedding ceremony. Becoming ordained with a legitimate organization, recognized in all fifty states, is the best way to meet those regulations. Here are essential questions to consider:
What Do You Need To Officiate A Wedding In Colorado
Once you’ve spoken with county marriage officials, simply visit our website, sign in to your account, and order whatever materials you might need. One of our more popular items among ULC ministers in Colorado is the Classic Wedding Set.
In general, minister registration is not required in the state of Colorado. That being said, it’s not uncommon for the county clerk to ask for proof of your ordination before giving the “go-ahead” to perform marriage ceremonies. Plus, the couple will have peace of mind knowing that their wedding minister has an ordination certificate and other official documents on hand, just in case. As requested by county officials, please order your materials well in advance of the ceremony.
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How To Get Married In Wyoming
Wyoming’s Top Wedding Spot
Enjoy stellar views of the Tetons at one of Jackson Hole’s ranches
Now that you’ve done all of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! Be sure that the couple has picked up their Wyoming marriage license from the appropriate office. This license is valid for 1 year, and there is no mandatory waiting period between when the couple picks up the marriage license in Wyoming and when the ceremony may legally be conducted. Please be aware that the signed license must be returned to the issuing office by its date of expiry.
At the Universal Life Church we receive several calls from wedding officiants in Wyoming, after they’ve received their license to marry by getting ordained online, asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony. Once the legal matters have been taken care of, officiating a wedding can be a great deal of fun. We would suggest that new Wyoming wedding ministers concerned about the ceremony peruse one of our helpful wedding guides. The minister training section of our website should offer a helpful refresher for more experienced ministers.
Can Your Friend Or Family Member Officiate Your Wedding
Ordination requirements differ from state to state and even from county to county and city to city. Step one is to do your research and make sure your friend or family member is legally able to officiate your wedding. In some states, for example, a couple doesn’t even need an officiant, while in others, only pastors can perform a wedding.
You’ll want to do your research first to make sure you’re following local state or district rules. For example, in New York City, your officiant will have to register with the court at the city clerk’s office.
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Amanda + Peter Poetic Self Uniting Ceremony
Just like with Sophie and David, Amanda and Peter wanted their parents and siblings present at their elopement ceremony, but they still wanted to self solemnize. They had each member of their families come up and share words of advice and stories with them.
And Amanda and Peter themselves actually decided not to read their private vows during the ceremony but save them for later. Instead, they read a poem during their ceremony, followed up by them pronouncing themselves married. Take a peek at their self solemnization elopement here.
Use Our Amm Wedding Helper
If the process of planning, scripting, and performing a wedding is daunting, then you need our suite of tools.We have distilled years of experience into an easy-to-use platform with training materials, quizzes, a personalized ceremony script generator, and tips to prepare you for performing marriage, all accessible through your minister profile.That’s only the beginning. After the wedding, you can share your wedding on the with our nationwide network of ministers.
OFFICIANT GOVERNMENT REGISTRATION BY STATE
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