Plan Your Marriage Ceremony
Who Can Perform a Marriage Ceremony?
Family Code Section §400
Marriage may be solemnized by any priest, minister, or rabbi of any religious denomination, a judge or retired judge, commissioner or retired commissioner, or assistant commissioner of a court of record, a judge or magistrate who has resigned from office, or by a person authorized to do so under Family Code Section §401.
Effective January 1, 2017
Expands who may solemnize marriages in California to include: a former member of the Legislature or constitutional officer of this state or a former member of Congress from this state or a person that holds or formerly held a city or county elected office.
Family Code Section §401
For each county, the county clerk is designated as a commissioner of civil marriages. The commissioner of civil marriages may appoint deputy commissioners of civil marriages who may solemnize marriages under the direction of the commissioner.
Civil Marriage Ceremonies
Civil marriage ceremonies are performed on a limited basis through the Clerk-Recorder Office, Friday from 9-11a.m. by appointment only. Fees must be pre-paid and are non-refundable. For current civil marriage ceremony fees, click here.
Civil marriage ceremonies are performed in Spanish on the first Friday of the month through the Clerk-Recorder Office. Friday from 9-11a.m. by appointment only. Fees must be pre-paid and are non-refundable. For current civil marriage ceremony fees, click here.
Proof of Marriage
A marriage certificate verifies that you are legally married and may be required when you apply for spousal benefits for healthcare or social security.
How a Marriage License Becomes a Marriage Certificate
After the marriage ceremony, the completed marriage license must be returned to the Clerk-Recorder’s Office within 10 business days. The Office records the license and it then becomes a marriage certificate