If you're planning on getting married in the state of Washington, you might be wondering if you need a marriage license.

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The answer is yes, but the process is relatively simple and straightforward.

Here's everything you need to know about getting a marriage license in Washington state.

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Susan Prentice

1) Obtaining a Marriage License in Washington State

In order to get married in Washington State, you'll need to first obtain a marriage license from a county clerk's office. Both spouses must appear in person at the time of application and present valid identification, such as a driver's license, passport, or birth certificate.

There is a 3-day waiting period for obtaining a marriage license in Washington State, so you can apply and receive your paperwork in a few days.

A marriage license purchased from any county in Washington State can be used to get married anywhere in the state.

If you plan to marry in another state or country, you must apply for a marriage license and comply with its laws for getting married. A marriage in another jurisdiction is valid in Washington State if it is not prohibited by Washington state law.

The cost of a marriage license varies by county but is typically between $30 and $60.

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2) Who Can Officiate Your Wedding Ceremony?

State law prescribes who can perform a marriage ceremony: active and retired Supreme Court justices, Court of Appeals judges, Superior Court judges, Superior Court commissioners, and judges of courts of limited jurisdiction, as well as any regularly licensed or ordained minister or priest of any church or religious denomination.

See Chapter 26.04 of Washington state law for a complete list.

3) Signing the Marriage License and Returning It to the County Clerk

Once your ceremony is complete, both spouses must sign the marriage license and have it witnessed by at least two other people who are over the age of 18. The signed license must be returned to the issuing county clerk's office within 30 days of the ceremony.

If you don't return the signed license within this timeframe, your marriage will not be considered legal in Washington State.


Getting married is an exciting time in your life - Once you've taken care of all these things, you'll be ready to enjoy your happily ever after!

KEEP READING: Here are the most popular baby names in every state

Using March 2019 data from the Social Security Administration, Stacker compiled a list of the most popular names in each of the 50 states and Washington D.C., according to their 2018 SSA rankings. The top five boy names and top five girl names are listed for each state, as well as the number of babies born in 2018 with that name. Historically common names like Michael only made the top five in three states, while the less common name Harper ranks in the top five for 22 states.

Curious what names are trending in your home state? Keep reading to see if your name made the top five -- or to find inspiration for naming your baby.

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