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Obtaining a Duplicate Marriage License

Family Code Sections 360 and 510 provide that the person who solemnized a marriage may obtain a duplicate license for a public License and Certificate of Marriage and a License and Certificate of Confidential Marriage if the certificate is lost, damaged, or destroyed after the marriage but prior to registration, or deemed unacceptable for registration by the local registrar (County Recorder or County Clerk).

A duplicate license may be issued up to one year from the date the original license was issued. If more than one year from the date of issuance has passed, the event must be recorded by a License and Certificate of Declaration of Marriage or Court Order Delayed Certificate of Marriage.

The following gives an example of when a duplicate license can be issued:

Example: Date of Public/Confidential License Issued: 07/12/2008
Duplicate License may be issued through: 07/11/2009

In order to obtain a duplicate marriage license, the marriage officiant is required to either appear personally in our office or call our office and speak to a representative who can give instructions on how to obtain the duplicate by mail.

If appearing in our office, the marriage officiant will need to bring in the following:

  1. Original marriage license (if it has not been lost)
  2. Valid government issued picture ID
  3. $25 fee

An affidavit will be printed out and will need to be signed in our office. The duplicate license will be printed and the only signature that is required is that of the person who solemnized the marriage. However, if present at the time of issuance, the parties to the marriage and the witness(es) may also sign the duplicate license. If the parties and witness(es) are not present, their names will be typed in their signature box.

NOTE: The duplicate license must be exactly the same as the original license issued. If after the fact, an error was noticed on the original license, it cannot be corrected on the duplicate license – it must instead be corrected using an amendment form.

Replacement Licenses

The provisions for issuing a replacement marriage license were removed in AB 1102, Chapter 816, Statutes of 2006. It is now required that the couple purchase a new marriage license if the license is lost, damaged or destroyed before the marriage ceremony takes place. Upon purchase of a new marriage license the old license shall be voided (Family Code Section 360(d)).