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Marriage Laws U.S. District of Columbia DC Wedding Officiants

Marriage license requirements in the federal district of Washington, D.C. Here is what you need to bring with you, and what you need to know about the District of Columbia marriage laws before you apply for the District of Columbia marriage license application.

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Marriage License in Washington, DC

This guide outlines the current process for applying for a marriage license in Washington, DC and is subject to change. If we learn of any modifications to the process, we will update this page.

A blood test is NOT required. The minimum age for marriage in the District of Columbia is 18 years or 16 years with the consent of a parent or guardian. Proof of age for the applicant's must be shown at the time of application.

A government-issued photo ID is required in the form of:

  1. Print out a copy of the Marriage License Application.
    *The application has been revised and now asks for the names of the two spouses (previously listed as Bride and Groom).

  2. Note: You MUST include the name of the officiant performing the wedding ceremony on your application. Your officiant must be authorized by the Court and registered by the Marriage Bureau to legally perform ceremonies in the District of Columbia.

  3. Complete the application form.

  4. One or both partners, or a third party, can apply for a marriage license application. Bring your completed application, proof of age and $45.00 in payment of credit card, cash, or money order ($35 for application and $10 for license) or money order (payable to DC Superior Court) to:

  5. Moultrie Courthouse
    500 Indiana Avenue, N.W.
    Room 4485
    Washington, DC 20001
    (202) 879-4840
    8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. / M - F

  6. Same sex couples may apply for marriage licenses in the District of Columbia.
    Source: DC Marriage Bureau.

  7. Note: The $35 application fee is waived for couples who are registered in the District as domestic partners. Those couples should bring their proof of registration and $10 license fee.

    Parking is EXTREMELY limited in this area and we recommend using METRO or taking a cab to the courthouse. The closest METRO stop is Judiciary Square on the Red Line.

  8. After submitting and paying for your marriage license application you will receive a payment receipt. DO NOT LOSE YOUR RECEIPT!

  9. By DC law, three full business days must pass between the day of application and the day that the license can be issued. In addition, due to the anticipated increase in volume, a processing delay is possible. Confirm what day you can pick up your license before leaving.

  10. Any person can pick up with receipt of application fees.

  11. Bring your license to your ceremony. The officiant must sign and file your license for your marriage to be legal.

  12. Legal certificate of marriage must be ordered from the DC Marriage Bureau. $10 fee. (Marriage Bureau does not automatically mail certificate)

  13. Marriage license has no specified time frame.

  14. An unsigned marriage license can be used throughout the District of Columbia.

Name Change:

Getting a marriage license with your new name on it does not mean your name has automatically changed. If you need to change your last name, you can use an online marriage name change kit.

Copy of Certificate of Marriage:

Before 1980: Marriage Bureau & Special Services
500 Indiana Ave. NW, Rm4335
Washington, DC 20001

Copy of Certificate of Marriage:

After 1980: Vital Records Department
825 North Capitol Street NE
1st Floor, Room 1312
Washington, DC 20002
202-783-1809 for credit card orders
Fax: 202-783-0136

Please Note: Federal Districts and State marriage license requirements often change. The above information is for guidance only and should not be regarded as legal advice.

It is important that you verify all information with your D.C. Superior Court marriage license office before making any wedding or travel plans.

To notify us of corrections or additions send an email to

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Order Vital Records Online! certified copies of Birth, Death, Marriage, and Divorce certificates, for events which occurred within the District of Columbia.

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