With its rolling mountain views, breathtaking foliage, and farm-to-table cuisine, it’s no surprise that so many couples choose to get married in Vermont. As the owners of a Vermont barn wedding venue for more than 20 years, we’d like to consider ourselves experts in all things related to Vermont weddings. If you’re considering getting married in Vermont, we’re here to help simplify the process for you. From the necessary requirements to the quick steps of obtaining a marriage license, we’ve got the straightforward answers to help make your Vermont wedding planning hassle-free.
What are the Legal Requirements to Get Married in Vermont?
Before you embark on your wedding journey, it’s crucial to understand the requirements of Vermont marriage laws. Fortunately, Vermont keeps it relatively simple – essentially, you must be a legal adult, have a valid Vermont marriage license, and cannot still be legally married. A fuller list of requirements are as follows:
- Both parties must be at least 18 years old. Previously those between the ages of 16 and 18 could get married with the consent of a parent or guardian, but this was void as of July 1, 2023.
- Both parties must be of sound mind.
- You cannot marry close relatives.
- No blood test is required in Vermont (or in any U.S. state anymore).
- You cannot still be legally married. If either party has been previously married, you must ensure that the divorce is finalized before applying for a marriage license.
- You must have a valid marriage license from a Vermont city or town.
How to Get a Marriage License in Vermont
To get married in Vermont, you’ll also need a marriage license. You can get a marriage license from the town or city clerk in the Vermont town where either of you resides. If neither party is a Vermont resident, you can obtain the license from the town where the marriage ceremony will take place. Both of you must also appear in person to apply for the marriage license, as both parties must sign the application to certify the accuracy of the information provided. During this process you’ll also have to provide basic information about yourselves, as well as information about your previous marriages if any. Before attending your appointment, you’ll need to gather a few essential documents:
- A government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, to establish your identity and age.
- The finalized divorce decree if either party has been previously married.
- A certified copy of your birth certificate is not required, but can be helpful to confirm any necessary details.
In addition to these documents, you will also need to pay for the $80 fee associated with obtaining a marriage license in Vermont. All in all, the entire process of getting a Vermont marriage license takes about 20-30 minutes, with most prepared couples receiving their license after one quick visit to the town clerk’s office.
How Fast Can You Get Married in Vermont?
The allure of a spontaneous wedding is undeniable, and Vermont marriage laws accommodate such romantic whims. Your marriage license is valid immediately upon issuance and remains valid for 60 days. Since there’s no waiting period, you can exchange vows immediately or plan a ceremony at your convenience. The flexibility allows couples to embrace the impromptu magic of Vermont’s landscapes for a truly unforgettable moment. However, if you do not marry within the 60 day time frame, you must reapply for a new license.
Where Can You Get Married in Vermont?
With a Vermont marriage license, you have the ability to get married anywhere in the state. You do not have to get married in the town or city where your marriage license was issued. Although many couples opt for a simple ceremony at the courthouse or a more traditional venue such as a church or synagogue, we of course are biased and highly recommend finding a venue that highlights Vermont’s natural beauty.
There are a ton of wedding venues in Vermont, but we’d like to believe that The Barn at Boyden Farm is an exemplary option. Located in northern Vermont, our barn wedding venue is surrounded by sweeping mountain views and fields, and has the flexibility to be either an indoor or outdoor wedding venue. Choose to celebrate your special day outside in the fresh air, or host your wedding reception in our charming rustic barn, which is fully equipped with modern amenities and comforts.
Who Can Perform Marriages in Vermont?
To get married in Vermont, you will need an officiant. Your marriage can be solemnized by a Vermont judge, a justice of the peace, or an ordained or licensed member of the clergy residing in Vermont. Clergy residing in an adjoining state or Canada can also marry you as long as their organization partly falls in Vermont. If the clergy member you’d like to perform your ceremony does not fall into this category, they will need to get a special authorization from the probate court. This special authorization must come from the court in the same district as your wedding venue.
Additionally, if you’d like someone else to officiate your wedding, anyone over the age of 18 can register with the Secretary of State to become a temporary marriage officiant in Vermont. All they’ll need to do is fill out the registration form and pay a $100 registration fee. After the corresponding marriage license expires, so will their authority to officiate a marriage.
Do You Need a Witness to Get Married in Vermont?
Vermont does not require witnesses in order for people to get married – you’ll just need an officiant. However, certain religions may require a witness apart from the officiant in order to validate the marriage.
What Do We Do With the Marriage License After the Wedding?
Before you officially get married, both parties must sign the marriage license and deliver it to your officiant. After your ceremony, your officiant must fill out the rest of the form, as well as sign it, effectively transforming your marriage license into a marriage certificate. The officiant then must return the license to the town or city clerk where it was issued within 10 days of the wedding in order to officially register it. If your officiant is a temporary officiant, you’ll need to ensure that a copy of their certificate of authorization is also given to the clerk’s office with your marriage certificate.
How to Get a Copy of Your Marriage Certificate in Vermont
To get a copy of your marriage certificate in Vermont, you can arrange for the clerk’s office to send you a certified copy of the certificate in the mail after your marriage has been performed and registered. A certified copy costs $10 on top of the $80 marriage license fee, and comes signed, dated, and embossed with the town or state seal.
Alternatively, you can request a copy either in person or in writing from the town clerk’s office where you received your marriage license two weeks after the wedding, or you can do the same thing six weeks after the wedding at the Vermont Department of Health’s Vital Records Office. Both of these options still require the same $10 fee.
In conclusion, getting married in Vermont is a fairly easy and overall enchanting experience. With all of the paperwork aside, you are all set to enjoy your special day! The Barn at Boyden Farm, with its rustic charm and scenic beauty, provides the perfect venue for couples seeking an idyllic Vermont wedding. Whether you’re planning a small ceremony or a meticulously orchestrated affair, we welcome you with open arms. Cheers to your Vermont wedding adventure!
For the most up-to-date information on Vermont marriage laws, be sure to check official documentation from the Vermont Department of Health.