Your New York Wedding License (Licence)

Obtaining a Marriage License in New York City

You may apply online at City Clerk Online for your license not more than 20 days in advance. Then, when you arrive in New York, you may go to one of the Marriage License Bureaus and pick up your license, showing your ID or Passports. Your license must be obtained 24-hours before your wedding. This funny law requires a "cooling off" period!

As indicated at City Clerk Online, Please note that applications submitted online expire after 21 days. You must complete your application before then either by 1) appearing at the Office of the City Clerk, as required, with proper identification, your payment, and any additional required documentation, or 2) when permissible by mailing your application materials to the Office of the City Clerk as instructed. If you do not complete your application before it expires, you will need to resubmit it.

You will need two forms of identification, with picture and address. Your Passport is acceptable. If either of you has been married previously, you must bring official documents listing the decrees of your settlement. The following types of identification are acceptable:

  • •  Driver's license, non-driver identification card, or learner's permit, with photograph, from any state or United States territory;
  • •  Active United States Military Identification Card;
  • •  Valid passport;
  • •  United States Certificate of Naturalization (less than ten years old);
  • •  United States Alien Registration Card; or
  • •  United States Employment Authorization Card.

The fee is $35.00 US, payable by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express) or money order made out to the City Clerk of New York. Cash and personal checks are not accepted.

If you have not applied online, then you will need to apply at one of the five Borough Halls in New York City listed below, at least a minimum of 24-hours in advance of your planned Ceremony. The offices are generally open until 3:45 pm on weekdays. Going early in the day is always recommended.

If after your Wedding, you plan to expedite the receipt of your completed Marriage Certificate, (this is an option if you need it right away for immigration, insurance, employment, etc. purposes) you must make your application at the Manhattan Office at 141 Worth Street at the corner of Centre Street downtown near City Hall. Then, after your Wedding, you must both bring back your signed and completed Marriage License, pay $15.00 more, and your Certificate of Marriage will be printed for you on-the-spot!

List of all Borough Offices

Manhattan Office
Hours8:30 am to 3:45 pm, Monday through Friday
Address141 Worth Street, New York, NY 10013
SubwayBrooklyn Bridge Station on the 4, 5, & 6 lines; Park Place Station on the 2 & 3 lines; City Hall Station on the N & R lines; Chambers Street Station on the A & C lines
BusesM1, M6, M15, M22, M103, B51, and express buses serving the City Hall area
  
Bronx Office
Hours8:30 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday
AddressSupreme Court Building, 851 Grand Concourse, Room B131, Bronx, NY 10451
Subway161st Street-Yankee Stadium Station on the 4, B, & D lines
BusesBx1, Bx6, Bx13
  
Brooklyn Office
Hours8:30 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday
AddressBrooklyn Municipal Building, 210 Joralemon Street, Room 205, Brooklyn, NY 11201
SubwayBorough Hall (Court Street) Station on the 2, 3, 4, 5, M, & R lines
BusesB25, B26, B37, B38, B41, B45, B51, B52, B54, B57, B61, B65, B67, B75, B103
  
Queens Office
Hours8:30 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday
AddressBorough Hall Building, 120-55 Queens Boulevard, Ground Floor, Room X001, Kew Gardens, NY 11424
SubwayKew Gardens-Union Turnpike Station on the E & F lines
BusesQ10, Q37, Q46, Q60, Q74
  
Staten Island Office
Hours8:30 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday
AddressBorough Hall Building, 10 Richmond Terrace, Room 311, Staten Island, NY 10301
SubwaySt. George Station on the Staten Island Railway
BusesAcross from the Staten Island Ferry and served by all buses serving the ferry
  

Information for Non-U.S. Citizens

If you are not a U.S. citizen, here is the information you might need in order for your New York Marriage to be recognized in your home country:

City Clerk's Office - Marriage Records

Make sure your home country accepts the regular New York City license, or whether you will also need to apply for an apostille (special internal license stamp). Just phone your consulate and ask if you need an apostille, or extended license. A majority of countries, including the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries, simply accept a New York Marriage License; so do Canadians, and many Europeans.

If you do need the Apostille Stamp, it is possible to return early the next business day to the Manhattan City Clerk's office after your Marriage Ceremony, get your finished Marriage Certificate, and get the special stamp for a small charge. It's fairly painless, and you can ask about the process when you apply for your Marriage License. This is only possible if get your License at the Manhattan Office at 141 Worth Street, however.

You need an apostille for: Switzerland, Germany, (and maybe Norway?).

You do not need an apostille for: the UK, Commonwealth Realm (Australia, New Zealand, Canada, etc.), or Sweden.

After obtaining your completed Marriage Certificate at the Manhattan Office, you must then take that certificate to The Department of State at 123 William Street, 19th Floor, for the authentication of the County Clerk's signature and the attachment of an "Apostille," for a fee of $10.00.

The fee for a Marriage Record for domestic use (short certificate) is $15.00 for the first copy. The fee for a Marriage Record for foreign use (extended certificate) is $35.00 for the first copy.

Learn about the purpose of the Apostille via the Web site of the Department of State of the State of New York.

Please also see the Apostille Section of the HCCH (Hague Conference on Private International Law) Web site. Be sure to download a copy of the PDF brochure, The ABCs of Apostilles: How to ensure that your public documents will be recognised abroad.

For general information about Apostilles, please see this Wikipedia article on the subject.