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Massachusetts Marriage License FAQs


Where do we apply for our marriage license?


Whether you are residents or non-residents, you must apply in person at city hall of any city or town in Massachusetts.  The document is called “Notice of Intention of Marriage.” Couples applying in Boston must go to Room 213 (the Registry Division) at Boston City Hall.  You do not need to apply in the same city or town where you plan to wed. 


What do we need to bring?


Both of you need to bring your social security numbers (just the number, not the card) and valid government-issued identification.  When you fill out the application, each of you will need to provide the following information: name, date of birth, occupation, address of residence, number of previous marriages and how the last marriage ended, existence of present or former Civil Union or state-created Domestic Partnership and dissolution status, birthplace, full name of parents, gender, and whether you are related by blood or marriage.  You may also be asked to provide your officiant’s name and address. 


How much does it cost?


The fee for a marriage license will vary from $4 to $50 depending on where you apply for the license, and it must be paid by cash or money order.  In Boston, the fee is $50.00. 


How many witnesses do we need?


Massachusetts does not require any witnesses other than the officiant.


How do we file the marriage license?


You don’t!  I will complete the bottom portion of the license and file it with the city or town where it was issued no later than the tenth day of the month following the wedding.


When should we apply for the license, and for how long is it valid?


You don’t want to wait until the last minute, but you also shouldn’t do it too soon!  There is a three-day waiting period to receive the license, and it is valid for 60 days from the day you originally file, so you should apply for the license between 3-60 days before your wedding. Regardless of where you applied for the marriage license, it may be used in any city or town within the Commonwealth.  In certain circumstances, a judge can waive the three-day waiting period.

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