The elevator inside the Old County Courthouse is undergoing maintenance and WILL NOT BE OPERABLE from May 29 to July 14, 2017. Therefore, to access Marriage and Passport Services on the 2nd floor of the Old County Courthouse during this time period, you can;
- Enter the 1st floor of the building from the parking lot entrance and use the stairs to the left of the elevator;
- Enter the building from the front door entrance that lead to the 2nd floor using the stairs facing Santa Ana Blvd.; or
- Enter the building from the side entrance that lead to the 2nd floor using the stairs facing Broadway.
If you had planned to obtain a marriage license, have or attend a marriage ceremony or obtain passport services at the Old County Courthouse during this time period and are unable to use the stairs, you may visit our South County Branch Office in Laguna Hills to obtain these services.
You may also visit our North County Branch Office in Downtown Fullerton to obtain a marriage license or have a marriage ceremony performed. Please note that our Fullerton location does not offer passport services.
You may also obtain a marriage license and passport services at our satellite unit located inside the County Community Service Center in Westminster. Please note that no marriage ceremonies are performed at this location.
Should you have any questions please call us at (714) 834-2500 for more information about the services offered at each of our locations.
Marriage licenses are issued to applicants on the spot. A marriage license is valid for 90 days. There are no citizenship or residency requirements, nor are blood tests required to obtain a marriage license. Applicants must be over 18 years old. Couples can begin the process for submitting an application for a marriage license online. (See Online Services.)
For your convenience, appointments are accepted but not required. Online applicants are given priority.
Walk in applicants are taken on a first-come, first-served basis. Afternoons and Fridays are the busiest times.
Payment can be made by cash, personal check, cashier's check, money order, Discover, American Express, MasterCard/Visa Credit and Debit.
To complete the application for a marriage license, a couple must:
- Appear together in person.
- Each present one form of a valid non-expired photo identification (such as a driver's license or passport).
- If divorced within the last 90 days, please provide a certified copy of the divorce decree. If spouse is deceased within the previous 90 days, please provide a certified copy of the death certificate. Click here for more information on obtaining a certified copy of your divorce decree.
- Select the name each wishes to use after marriage, to be listed on the marriage license. Couples are not required to change their names nor are they required to take the same name. However, if a name change is desired, it must be correctly reflected before the marriage license is signed. Once the license is signed, names can only be changed by a court order.
Both individuals must be able to read, speak and understand English. If not, the couple must bring a third party translator to obtain a license and to have a ceremony performed. The department does not provide translation services.
Public Marriage License
A public marriage license is a public record, and anyone can request a copy or information from the record. This license can be used anywhere in the State of California.
Confidential Marriage License
A confidential marriage license becomes a confidential record, and the only people able to obtain information about it are the couple, except by special court order. The requirements to obtain this type of license are:
- Couple must be living together prior to the marriage.
- This license can be used anywhere in the State of California.
United States Armed Forces Stationed Overseas
A member of the Armed Forces of the United States who is stationed overseas serving in a conflict or a war and is unable to appear for the issuance of a license and solemnization of the marriage may enter into the marriage by the appearance of an attorney-in-fact, commissioned and empowered in writing for that purpose through a power of attorney. The attorney-in-fact must personally appear at the Clerk-Recorder Department with the party who is not stationed overseas, and present the original power of attorney, duly signed by the party stationed overseas and acknowledged by a notary or witnessed by two officers of the United States Armed Forces.
The power of attorney shall state the true legal names of the parties to be married, and that the power of attorney is solely for the purpose of authorizing the attorney-in-fact to obtain a marriage license on the person's behalf and to participate in the solemnization of the marriage. The original power of attorney shall be a part of the marriage certificate upon registration.