Couples planning to
marry in the State of Wisconsin must obtain a marriage license in the
State of Wisconsin. It is important to bring all necessary documents
with you at the time of application and all documents required must be
certified copies or originals. No blood tests are required. Couples
should apply two to three weeks before the intended date of marriage in
order to allow processing and time to obtain any additional items
needed. The following information answers most questions, but if there
are any issues not covered, please contact the Buffalo County Clerk's
Office at (608) 685-6209.
Any person who has
attained the age of 18 years may marry, if otherwise competent. If a
person is between the ages of 16 and 18 years, a license may be issued
only with the written consent of parents, guardian, custodian, or parent
having the actual care, custody and control of the person. Consent forms
are available in the County Clerk's Office and must be completed at the
time of application. Age requirements apply at the time of marriage, not
at the time of application for a license.
Persons closer in
relationship than second cousins may not marry except where the female
has attained the age of 55 years or where either party, at the time of
application for a marriage license, submits an affidavit signed by a
physician stating that either party is permanently sterile.
Divorced persons may
not remarry in Wisconsin until six months after the granting of a
judgment of divorce, whether the divorce was granted in Wisconsin or
elsewhere. A certified copy of the judgment of divorce, legal annulment
or death certificate from the last prior marriage must be presented.
NOTE: In order to validate a marriage contracted out of state prior to
the expiration of six months after a judgment of divorce, a couple may
remarry in Wisconsin after the six month waiting period has expired
without annulment of the out of state marriage.
If both applicants
are Wisconsin residents, application must be made in the county where
one party has resided for at least 30 days. If both parties are
residents of other states, application must be made in the county where
the ceremony is to be held. Each party is required to present
satisfactory proof of identification and residence and shall swear to
the application before the clerk who issues the license.
All applicants must present a certified copy of a state birth certificate.
Hospital certificates are not acceptable.
A 5 day waiting
period is required by law. The day of application is not included in the
five day waiting period. This may be waived at the discretion of the
County Clerk, for a waiver fee of $25.00(cash only).
The license is valid
for 30 days after date of issuance and the marriage must be performed
within that period. The fee for a marriage license is $75.00(cash
clergyman of any religious denomination or society or any judge of a
court of record or a family court commissioner may perform the
ceremony.* The two parties themselves, by such mutual declarations in
accordance with the customs, rules and regulations of any religious
society, denomination or sect to which either of the parties may belong
may also perform the ceremony. Two competent witnesses age 18 years or
over, other than the officiating person, are required. All entries on
the marriage certificate must be in black and all signatures must be
written with a black pen to ensure readable certified copies and in
order to be acceptable for registration.
Appointments are required.
We do not take walk-ins. The
office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
The last marriage license appointment is at 4:00 p.m.
If you are the last appointment of the day and are late you will
need to reschedule.