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Marriage Licenses: Common Mistakes

marriage license

The last thing you want is for your big event to be spoiled because of a preventable but all too common error! Unfortunately, that’s exactly the situation that some couples find themselves in, and all because they could have avoided these simple but dangerous marriage license pitfalls.

Mistake #1: Forgetting to file the marriage license. So you filed for your marriage license, took it to the ceremony, made sure that all parties signed the document, and then in the post-glow of a fabulous wedding, your officiant never got around to filing the thing. Big mistake! Despite what you may think, just because you had a ceremony, and just because the marriage license is signed does not mean that the marriage is legal. The marriage is only legal once the document is filed with the county clerk. So don’t wait for months or years to take care of this issue if your officiant forgets to file your marriage license.

Mistake #2: Not being careful when you fill out your marriage license form. If you make a mistake, whether it is a name is spelled incorrectly or a botched social security number or incorrect birthday on your marriage license, you are setting yourself up for issues later on. The certified marriage certificate that is created after your marriage license is filed is used to prove everything from a right to death benefits to rights to insurance coverage – if the dates or names don’t match, you could be rejected from an important benefit in your time of need.

Mistake # 3: Not correcting a mistake on your marriage license. Maybe you were in a rush and only noticed after the certificate came back that there was a mistake. Don’t compound that mistake by not getting it fixed as quickly as possible. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to forget about it. Simply visit your county clerk’s office to request the correction on your marriage license and the marriage certificate that was generated from it (if you’re already married).

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