Marriage License Requirements in Texas, Harris County

marriage license requirements in Texas, Harris county

Marriage License Requirements for Harris County, Houston

To get your Marriage License Requirements in Texas, Harris County, here’s what you need to know and what documents to bring with you before you apply for a marriage license in Texas. We recommend getting this legal aspect of your wedding out of the way about a month before your ceremony date.

Marriage License Requirements for Harris County, Houston…It is important that you verify all information with the Harris County County marriage license bureau office or county clerk before making any wedding or travel plans.

ID Requirement:
To get a marriage license in Texas, you will need one valid form of id such as drivers license, certified copy of your birth certificate, U. S. passport, military ID card, and your Social Security number.

Residency Requirement:

Neither one of you have to be a resident of Texas. Texas is a great locale for a destination wedding!

Pre-marital Education:

In Texas, couples are encouraged to attend a premarital education course that is at least four hours duration. It must be finished during the year preceding applying for a marriage license. Contact the county clerk for a roster of area course providers.

Previous Marriage:

If divorced within thirty days, Texas requires that you show a certified copy of your divorce decree stating the 30 day waiting period is waived.

Waiting Period in Texas:

The 72 hours (3 days) waiting period in Texas can be waived for active duty military personnel.

Fees and Other Tests:

$31 – $71 cash, so don’t leave home without it! The fees may vary from Texas county to county. Blood tests or medical examinations are not required in Texas.

NOTE: Effective September 2008, the license fee will be waived if a couple takes an 8-hour premarital preparation course that covers important marital skills and issues such as conflict management and communication.

Common Law Marriage or Informal Marriage:

Yes. Texas also refers to common law marriage as an informal marriage.For a marriage to be declared an informal marriage in Texas, a couple has two options.

        1. Sign a declaration of their marriage under oath. The form is available at County Clerk’s office.
The Declaration and Registration of Informal Marriageasks for full names, woman’s maiden surname, addresses, dates of birth, places of birth, social security numbers, and relationship information.
      The Declaration states: “I solemnly swear (or affirm) that we, the undersigned, are married to each other by virtue of the following facts: On or about (Date) we agreed to be married, and after that date we lived together as husband and wife and in this state we represented to others that we were married. Since the date of marriage to the other party I have not been married to any other person. This declaration is true and the information in it which I have given is correct.”
      2. Live together as husband and wife in Texas
      Represent to others that they are married.
             Agree with one another that they are married.
                 Individuals under the age of 18 may not enter into an informal marriage.

Renewal of Vows or Secret Marriage Remarriage:

According to the Texas state laws, a county clerk must issue a marriage license to a couple who is already married to each other.Yes. In Texas, any adult person can apply on behalf of an applicant who is unable to appear personally before the county clerk. An affidavit of absence form must be provided. If you are incarcerated and are unable to be present for your wedding ceremony, you can also request a Prison Proxy form.

Officiants:Persons authorized to perform weddings in Texas include licensed or ordained Christian ministers, priests, Jewish rabbis, officers authorized by religious organizations, justices of the supreme court, judges of the court of criminal appeals, justices of the courts of appeals, judges of the district, county, and probate courts, judges of the county courts at law, judges of the courts of domestic relations, judges of the juvenile courts, retired justices or judges, justices of the peace, retired justices of the peace, and judges or magistrates of a federal court of Texas.


The license is valid in Texas for 30 days.

Copy of Certificate of Marriage:

Bureau of Vital Statistics
Texas Department of Health
P.O. Box 12040
Austin, TX 78711-2040
Phone – (512) 458-7111

It is important that you verify all information with your local marriage license office or county clerk before making any wedding or travel plans.
Please Note: State and county marriage license requirements often change. The above information is for guidance only and should not be regarded as legal advice. Check with Harris County Clerk for changes and clarifications in the requirements before you leave home to apply for your marriage license.

Harris County Marriage License in Texas, Harris County – Office

Harris County Clerk
201 Caroline
3rd floor
Houston, TX 77251
(713) 755-6411
8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. / M – F
Closed for holidays.

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