Getting a Marriage License in Baltimore, Maryland

You found your mate and have a date set—now it's time to make things official. This is an exciting time for both of you, so make sure you understand all the marriage license rules and regulations in Baltimore, Maryland or else you risk putting a dent in your plans. This information is for Baltimore City only. If you live in a surrounding county, the rules may vary.

Marriage License Basics

You do not need to be a Baltimore resident to get married in the city. However, keep in mind you must be married in the county where you purchase your license.

  • A marriage license is a document that authorizes a couple to marry. 
  • The City of Baltimore is the issuing authority for marriage licenses in Baltimore. 
  • Either the couple or a member of the couple must apply in person for a marriage license.
  • Parental consent is needed for those under 18 years of age.
  • No blood test is required.
  • The license is valid for six months after it is issued.

ID Requirement in Maryland

  • If you are under the age of 22, you must provide identification in the form of a driver's license, military identification, or passport and your birth certificate.
  • You may also need both of your social security numbers.
  • Only one applicant needs to be present.
  • It is recommended that you bring identification with you even if you are over 21.

Previous Marriages

  • You must either show your divorce decree or have information regarding the date, county, and state of death of your previous spouse.

Waiting Period

  • There is a 48-hour waiting period between obtaining a license and getting married.
  • Licenses are issued on the day you visit the courthouse.

Same-Sex Marriages

  • Same-sex marriages are legal in Maryland as of January 1, 2013.
  • There are many gay-friendly wedding venues and services in Baltimore.

Common Law Marriage

  • Not practiced in Maryland.

Cousin Marriages

  • Allowed in Maryland.

Age of Consent

  • Parental consent is needed if under 18 years of age.
  • If you are between 16-18 years of age, one of your parents or guardians must be with you and must provide written consent.
  • If you are under 16 years of age, you will need both written consent from your parent or guardian and the written approval of a judge of the Orphans' Court Division of the Court of Common Please.
  • If you are under 18 and show a certificate from a licensed physician that you are pregnant or have had a child, the parental consent requirement may be waived.

    License Fees

    • To get married in Baltimore City, a fee of $85 (cash only) is required at time of issue.
    • If you have completed a state-recognized pre-marital preparation course, you may be eligible for a discount on the license fee.

    Name Change

    • If you get a marriage license with your new name on it, this does not mean your name has automatically changed.

    Officiants

    • You can be married by an official of a religious order, a deputy clerk or a judge.
    • You can arrange for a marriage ceremony at the court

    Where to Obtain a Marriage License

    Circuit Court of Baltimore City
    Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr. Courthouse
    Marriage License Department
    100 North Calvert St.
    Room 628
    Baltimore, MD 21202
    (410) 333-3780
    Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
    Closed state and federal holidays.

    Copies of Marriage Certificates

    Copies of marriage certificates are can be ordered by mail from the Maryland Vital Statistics Administration (if your marriage took place on or after January 1, 1990) or in person from the Clerk of the Court for Baltimore County. The cost of the certificate is $5.50. You can pay by cash, check, money order, or credit card.