Do you need to know how to get married in Maine? Lucky for you, the process is very simple. In this post, I’ve listed all the steps to obtain your marriage license and get married in Maine, and I’ve even provided some important information about getting your marriage license. Definitely read this information, because you won’t find it on any other website, and it’s based on my years of experience with couples getting married here.
How Do We Get Married in Maine?
You want to know how to get married married in Maine? Ok, first, you need a marriage license. Marriage licenses are issued at the town or city level and are obtained by filing a State of Maine Intention to Marry form. Both members of the couple getting married must visit the town office in person to apply for the marriage license. Some towns are waiving the in-person requirement and are issuing licenses by mail due to COVID-19, but check your town’s website or give them a call for more information.
- If both of you are residents of the state of Maine, you should both apply at the town office where at least one of you is a resident. If you are residents of different Maine towns, you both may apply in one town or the other – you do not need to apply separately in each town.
- If one of you is from out of state, then you should apply in the Maine town where the other holds residency.
- If neither of you is a resident of Maine, then you may apply in any Maine town office. It need not be the same town where you plan to be married.
How Do We Get a Maine Marriage License?
Luckily, getting married a marriage license here is super straightforward. No blood tests or crazy waiting periods are required. All you have to do is follow these instructions and you’ll have your marriage license in a few moments.
- Bring a completed State of Maine Intention to Marry application.
- Photo ID such as a driver’s license may be required and they must not be expired.
- If this is not the first marriage for one of you, bring a certified (raised seal) copy of the divorce decree or death certificate of the last spouse.
- Applicants must be over 18 years old. Written parental consent is required for an applicant under 18. Written parental consent and written consent of a judge are required for an applicant under 16.
- No blood test is required.
You may want to check with the municipal clerk where you are filing beforehand to find out what that municipality’s policies are.
How Long is the Marriage License Valid?
Your marriage license is valid for 90 days and can only be used within the State of Maine. There is no waiting period from the time your marriage license is issued until your wedding can take place.
When Should We Get Our Marriage License?
The answer to this question is: how organized are you? If you’re very good at keeping important documents in a safe place, then by all means, get your marriage license as far in advance as you want (at most, 89 days).
But, if you don’t want the added stress of having to keep track of this important document, then you might want to wait until the week of your wedding. Some couples even get it on Friday before the rehearsal, but that’s a little too last minute for my liking.
Who Can Marry Us in Maine?
Other than me, the following individuals are authorized to perform marriages in Maine:
- Ordained ministers of the gospel
- A person licensed to preach by an association of ministers, religious seminary or ecclesiastical body
- Judges or justices (residents of Maine only)
- Lawyers admitted to the Maine Bar (residents of Maine only)
- Maine Notaries
Maine does not have Justices of the Peace. Out-of-state Notaries and Justices of the Peace cannot officiate weddings in Maine. Your officiant is responsible for completing the marriage license and for submitting it back to the issuing town office.
Legal Requirements for a Wedding in Maine
There are only three and they are:
- You must have two witnesses (the officiant cannot be a witness)
- You must agree to marry each other (yes, really!)
- Your officiant must pronounce you married
Other IMPORTANT Information
- As of 2021, the fee for the marriage license is about $40, but always check with the town office for the actual fee as it may vary from municipality to municipality.
- You can fill out the Maine Intention to Marry form ahead of your appointment at the town office, which will speed up the process once you’re in the office.
- The Intention to Marry form asks for the name, title, phone number, address, and email address of your officiant. You can leave it blank, but have this info handy, if you want to fill it out. If I’m your officiant, email me and I’ll share this information.
- Ask the town if you can purchase a Certified Copy of your marriage certificate at the same time you file your intention to marry. As of 2021, it’s $15 for the first certificate and $6 for each additional copy. It’s no big deal if they won’t let you order it ahead of time, but if you can, you’ll get the certificate quicker than having to obtain the certificate after the wedding.
- You will need to know the birthplace of both of your parents (state or country).
- Always call the town office first to make sure they’re open when you want to go and that there will be someone there who knows how to issue the marriage license.
- If you were previously married, give yourself plenty of time to order the “raised seal” copy of your divorce decree. I’ve heard it can take a really long time to receive this document.