Marriage Licenses, Copies, Name Change & Minister Authorization
Obtaining a Marriage License
Access the Clerk’s automated marriage license application system Using this online application will speed the marriage license issuance process.
Marriage licenses are
- issued 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday
- valid for 60 days
- Marriage must take place in Virginia.
- A self-addressed, stamped envelope should be presented for the return of a certified copy of the license.
- Both parties must be present and must be prepared to present a valid government-issued photo I.D. to confirm age eligibility.
- The minimum age at which persons may marry is 18, unless a minor has been emancipated by court order.
- Upon application for a marriage license, an emancipated minor must provide a certified copy of the order of emancipation.
- If either party is divorced, a certified copy of the final divorce decree must be provided. A copy is not required if finalized in Chesterfield.
The marriage license fee is $32.50
Marriage Ceremonies at Courthouse
There is no one in the Clerk’s Office (or Judges’ Chambers) that performs wedding ceremonies at the courthouse. It is recommended that parties contact a civil marriage celebrant or a minister authorized to perform marriages in Virginia. An authorized marriage celebrant should be able to produce a copy of the court order or clerk's order that authorized him/her to perform marriage ceremonies in Virginia
There are some civil celebrants appointed by the Court who are willing to perform ceremonies at the Courts Building (typically outside). Specific details regarding a ceremony would need to be discussed with the celebrant chosen.
Obtaining a Copy of a Marriage License
Copies of marriage licenses issued between July 1, 1997 and June 30, 2001
- To obtain a copy, the bride or groom must visit the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office in person with a government-issued photo identification card (e.g., driver’s license).
- Certified copies are available in the Clerk's Office during regular public service hours.
NOTE: In the event the bride or groom is unable to visit the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office, copies may be obtained through the Virginia Department of Health’s Division of Vital Records and Health Statistics.
Certified copies are $2.50 each
Copies of marriage licenses issued prior to July 1, 1997 or after June 30, 2001
- Marriage licenses issued during these timeframes are public records.
- Written requests for certified copies should include the following: full names of both parties (including maiden name as applicable), date of marriage, a self-addressed stamped envelope, and payment.
- Certified copies are available in the Clerk's Office during regular public service hours or via written request.
Certified copies are $2.50 each
Changing Your Name After Marriage
Contact the Social Security Administration in order to obtain a new social security card.
You will be required to present a certified copy of the marriage license with the application.
Minister Authorization to Perform Marriages
The Clerk's Office may authorize certain ministers to perform marriage ceremonies, provided that the minister meets the requirements of § 20-23 of the Code of Virginia, 1950, as amended.
The Court does not recognize ordinations issued online.
Out-of-state ministers may be authorized for a one-time ceremony, provided the ceremony will take place in Chesterfield.
If Code requirements are not clearly met, the minister must petition the Court similar to a civil celebrant.
NOTE: Before visiting the Clerk's Office to request authorization, please contact the office by phone at 804-748-1241 to confirm the process.