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Marriage Laws Texas, TX, Marriage License, Laws, Licenses U.S. Texas Dallas TX Wedding Officiants

There are two types of marriage licenses--Formal marriage license and Declaration and Registration of an Informal Marriage (Common law).

Formal Marriage:

Declaration and Registration of an Informal Marriage (Common Law):

Locations to get a marriage license in Dallas, TX:

Downtown Dallas at the Records Building
509 Main Street, Suite 200
Dallas, TX
8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. M - F

The East Dallas Government Center
3443 St. Francis Ave.
Dallas, TX
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. M - F

North Dallas Government Center
10056 Marsh Lane, Suite 137
Dallas, TX
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. M - F

Closed state and federal holidays.

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Marriage License in Dallas, TX

Formal Requirements:

A man and a woman desiring to enter into a ceremonial marriage must obtain a marriage license from the county clerk of any county of this state.

Informal Requirements

            Texas Family Code Chapter 2 Section ~2.401

The man and woman agreed to be married and after the agreement, they lived together in this state as husband and wife and there represented to others that they were married.

Needed Documents:

  1. Proof of Date: when you began living together as husband and wife.

  2. Proof of Address for both Parities.

  3. If divorced within 30 days of submission of application, certified copy of Divorce Decree is required.

  4. If born outside of the U.S. please bring Passport


Applicants should be 18 years or older with valid identification. Applicants under the age of 18 must have a certified copy of their (long form) birth certificate issued in the last 10 years.

The minimum age for marriage in Texas with parental consent is 16.  Parents listed on the long form birth certificate must be present and give written consent.  The consenting parent must provide some form of government identification such as a valid driver's license.  If the natural parents are divorced, the parent given custody must be present, and give written consent, and present a certified copy of their custody papers. 

Judicial approval is required for anyone under the age of 16 to marry. Individuals who are 16 and 17 must have judicial approval or parental consent.

Blood test or health certificates are not required to obtain a license.

A license will be issued to persons who may be delinquent for payment of court-ordered child support.

There is a 30-day waiting period after a divorce is granted within this state. An applicant may apply for a license within the 30 days if the court issues a waiver in the divorce decree.

Online Applications:

Marriage applications may also be started online. Once the application is submitted, the applicants must come to the office to pay the required filing fee and then obtain their license.

Acquiring a License:

As of September 1, 2008, couples who go through the State of Texas approved Marriage Education Class (House Bill 2685) will not have to pay the $60 State portion of their marriage license fee.  They still pay the smaller county portion, which varies by county. 

A valid form of identification includes: driver’s license, government issued ID card, military ID card, or passport  issued by the United States or a foreign government.

Forms of indentification cannot be mutilated (EX. torn, taped together, or laminated)

Absent Applicant Affidavit:

As of September 1, 2005, only military personnel or incarcerated persons are eligible for the absent applicant marriage form.

If one party is incarcerated, please contact your local marriage license office for proxy paperwork.

All information for an absent applicant affidavit can only be completed by the absent applicant. All Affidavit's must be Notarized.

In the last legislative session the law makers of Texas amended the FC §2.006 (b)(1) to read:

The person applying on behalf of an absent applicant shall provide to the clerk:
notwithstanding §132.001, Civil Practice and Remedies Code, the notarized affidavit of the absent applicant as provided by this subchapter;

“Notwithstanding” means “in spite of the fact that” or “regardless of.”

With the new law in place, persons who are incarcerated can no longer make the un-sworn declaration in lieu of a sworn statement on an absent applicant application.

The absentee applicant must return the completed affidavit directly to the person they wish to marry.  Both the bride and groom must be in full compliance with the following information or the application may be denied:

The absent applicant must complete this form in the presence of a Notary Public.  A title and name must be printed or typed below the authorized person's signature.

Time Limitations:

There is a 72-hour waiting period following the issuing of the license. If either party is active, military the 72-hour waiting period is waived.  Military identification is required at the time of application for this waiver.  As of September 1, 2005, the 72-hour waiting period is being strictly enforced.

If a marriage ceremony has not been conducted before the 31st day after the license is issued, the marriage license expires.  If the license expires before the marriage ceremony, a new license will have to be purchased.


Premarital Education Handbook:

The premarital handbook "When You Get Married" is provided by the Office of Attorney General under the Texas Family Code Section 2.014, in hopes of create a relationship that is satisfying and acceptable for you and your partner.

Copy of Certificate of Marriage:

Bureau of Vital Statistics
Texas Department of Health
P.O. Box 12040
Austin, TX 78711-2040
Phone - (512) 458-7111

It is important that you verify all information with your local marriage license office or county clerk before making any wedding or travel plans.

Please Note: State and county marriage license requirements often change. The above information is for guidance only and should not be regarded as legal advice. Check with Dallas County Clerk for changes and clarifications in the requirements before you leave home to apply for your marriage license.

To notify us of corrections or additions send an email to

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