Daily Life

I Do! Your Guide to New York Marriage Laws

If one thing is certain, it’s that love is in the air in New York State. According to the latest figures, more than 60,000 couples obtained New York marriage licenses last year, putting the state 4th in the league tables for the highest number of weddings. New York always tops the rankings for marriages in America, as it seems that people just cannot resist tying the knot here.

If you’re looking to join the ranks of New York newlyweds, you’ll want the lowdown on New York marriage laws before you take the plunge. Read on the find out everything you need to know about getting married in New York in 2022. 

After saying yes to an engagement, it's time to plan a wedding! Learn about New York marriage laws with our guide to get started.

1. Who is Eligible Under New York Marriage Laws?

First off, it is worth breaking down who can actually apply for legal marriage in New York State. New York’s marriage laws are fairly straightforward and do not differ much from most other states in America. In a nutshell, to get married you must be:

  • 18 years or older
  • 16 or 17 years of age, with your parents’ permission
  • 14 or 15 years of age, if the court grants special permission 

Other than this, there really are not many eligibility requirements to getting your marriage license. New York has always been one of the most progressive states in America, which is why it is a great place for same-sex marriage. Meanwhile, you do not even need to be a US citizen or resident to get married in New York. Any tourist visitor can obtain a marriage license and certificate from the country clerk’s office if you’re looking for an unforgettable destination wedding. 

2. What Documents Do You Need?

If you are applying for your marriage license, you will need to bring the right documents to the clerk’s office. Most important is proof of your age. There are a number of documents that the state deems as acceptable proof, which are: 

  • Birth certificate
  • Census record
  • Baptism record
  • Naturalization record

On top of this, you will also need to verify your personal identity, which you can do by showing your:

  • Driver’s license
  • Passport
  • Proof of employment
  • Immigration records 

3. What Are the Main Requirements?

To get married in New York without a hitch, you need to meet a few other very basic requirements. These are: 

  • You must wait at least 24 hours from the marriage licenses being issued before you can actually get married
  • You must be married inside New York state in order for your marriage certificate to be granted there
  • You must apply for a valid marriage license at the clerk’s office
  • This license must be delivered to the magistrate or clergy member who will be conducting the ceremony, within 60 days of you receiving it 

And that’s it!

4. Useful Tips for New York Newlyweds

We also have a couple of handy tips for those wishing to get their New York marriage off to the best possible start. First, it is worth exploring your options for pre-marriage counseling, to ensure that you and your partner start on the same page.

You can find highly-qualified premarital counseling in New York City for this purpose. Also, remember to choose an eligible official to conduct the ceremony, such as a licensed priest, a mayor, a judge, or a marriage officer. This is the only way to ensure your marriage is valid. 

Make 2022 the Year That Counts 

Now that you know the ins and outs of New York marriage laws, you can make 2022 a year to remember. For more hacks and useful advice on getting the most out of the year ahead, we have got you covered. Make sure to consult our dedicated lifestyle guides to learn more. 

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