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      MARRIAGE LICENSES

Where To Apply Who Can Perform A Ceremony?
When To Apply Completing The Process
Application Requirements Obtaining A Certified Copy
Identification Marriage License Search
Fees Wedding Resources
Frequently Asked Questions About Marriage Licenses
 Civil Union Registry

Previous to any marriage in Missouri, a license must be first obtained from the Jackson County Recorder of Deeds Department or other Recorder /Clerk office located within the State of Missouri. No marriage shall be recognized as valid unless the license has been previously obtained, and unless the marriage is solemnized by a person authorized by law to solemnize marriages. Following is a summary of information relating to obtaining a Marriage License or conducting a Marriage License Search:

WHERE TO APPLY

You can apply for a marriage license at either of the two Jackson County Recorder of Deeds offices:

Jackson County Courthouse
Recorder of Deeds Office

415 E. 12th Street, Room 104
Kansas City, MO 64106
(816) 881-1577
Historic Truman Courthouse
Recorder of Deeds Department
112 W. Lexington, Suite 30
Independence, MO 64050
(816) 881-4608

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WHEN TO APPLY  

Both offices are open Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., except for legal holidays.    

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APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS

1) Both parties must appear together at the Recorder of Deeds office.
2) Both must be at least 18 years old to marry without parental consent. CLICK HERE for application requirements for those wishing to marry after their 15th birthday but prior to turning 18 -- as well as legal guidelines for marriages of individuals under 15 years old
3) Both must provide their Social Security numbers. (No SSN card is required.)
4) Both must have proper identification.
5) Note: If either applicant is divorced or widowed, applicant(s) must provide the month/year the last marriage ended.  
 

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IDENTIFICATION 

The law requires the Recorder of Deeds to verify each applicant's identity and age. Verification is done in person at either of the Jackson County Recorder offices through the following documents:

  • Valid Driver's License
  • Missouri ID
  • U .S. Passport
  • Foreign Pass port with Visa or U.S. entry stamp
  • Military ID
  • Certified copy of U.S. Birth Certificate, plus U.S. government-issued photo ID
  • Government ID card with government issued ID number

For individuals who are not U.S. citizens, valid U.S. government documentation must be provided.  

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FEES

The fee for a marriage license is $50.00 and may be paid by cash, all credit cards except American Express or debit card at the time of the application. If the bride chooses to have her name changed after the wedding ceremony, a certified copy of the marriage license may be purchased for an additional $10.00. The certified copy is needed by the bride to present to agencies such as the Drivers License Bureau and Social Security Administration to effect a name change.

Where does the money for a marriage license go?    

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WHO CAN PERFORM A WEDDING CEREMONY?
Per Missouri State Statute the following are eligible to solemnize a marriage:

(Missouri Revised Statutes Section 451.100) Marriages may be solemnized by any clergyman, either active or retired, who is in good standing with any church or synagogue in this state. Marriages may also be solemnized, without compensation, by any judge, including a municipal judge. Marriages may also be solemnized by a religious society, religious institution, or religious organization of this state, according to the regulations and customs of the society, institution or organization, when either party to the marriage to be solemnized is a member of such society, institution or organization.

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COMPLETING THE PROCESS 

A marriage license is valid for 30 days following the issue date.

The license, whether used or not, must be returned to the Jackson County Recorder of Deeds office.  

If used, the clergyman or judge must return the Marriage License to the Recorder of Deeds Office. Your marriage ceremony must be held in the State of Missouri.

After the ceremony, the officiator will sign and give the couple a "keepsake" called a Marriage Certificate , which is not considered legal proof of a marriage ceremony. Missouri law requires that the officiator complete the bottom portion of the license and return it to the Recorder of Deeds office in the envelope provided within 15 days after the wedding. The license is preserved in the Record of Deeds Department as a public record.

A married couple does not automatically receive a copy of their marriage license after their wedding ceremony. Couples may purchase a certified copy of the marriage license that is accepted by government agencies, insurers, etc. as legal proof that a marriage ceremony has occurred.

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OBTAINING A CERTIFIED COPY

Certified copies of marriage licenses are available upon request in person or by mail after the license has been returned by the officiator. If requesting a certified copy by mail, please include the following with your request:  

  • Names of the bride and groom at the time of the application
  • The date of the marriage
  • Include $10.00 fee for each certified copy made payable to the "Recorder of Deeds Department"
  • The marriage license number, if known

Normally the day the request is received or the next morning, the certified copy will be returned to the requester. All written requests should be sent:

Historic Truman Courthouse
Recorder of Deeds Department
112 W. Lexington, Suite 30
Independence, MO 64050

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MARRIAGE LICENSES SEARCH

The County Recorder has marriage license records dating from 1826 to the present.

CLICK HERE to conduct online Marriage License searches.   

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WEDDING RESOURCES 

Clergy performing the marriage ceremonies are local ministers that have requested to be on the Jackson County Wedding Ceremony Resource List. They are not employed or compensated by Jackson County, and Jackson County does not independently verify the person’s legal qualification to perform marriages under Missouri law.

• Rev. Coleman

Friday and Saturday afternoons at the
Truman Memorial Building
416 W. Maple Avenue
Independence, Missouri
(816) 753-3886

• Rev. Greg Clemmons  (816) 686-6253

• Rev. Chris Pemberton (816) 277-7059

Other resources include the Wedding Ceremonies section of the Yellow Pages and/or the Internet.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Jackson County’s listing of any person, firm, or entity on the “Wedding Resource List” does not imply any endorsement of that person or that person’s services by the County or by any County official, including that person’s legal qualification under Missouri law to solemnize a marriage.   

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