Minnesota Marriage Laws

Marriage in Minnesota is a civil contract between a man and a woman. In order to marry in Minnesota, you must obtain a marriage license and have the marriage solemnized by an authorized person and in front of two witnesses. There is a $70 fee for the license and a 5-day waiting period—the license is valid for 6 months after the date of issuance. Only one of the parties to be married need to apply for the license in person and you need not be a resident of the State of Minnestoa to obtain a marriage license.

In order to marry, you must be 18 years old. 16 and 17-year-olds may marry with the consent of parents, guardian or the court.

Marriages are void if either of the party has not completely dissolved a previous marriage, if the marriage is between familial relations where the relationship is whole or half by blood or adoption. Minnesota does not allow same-sex marriages, cousin marriages or marriage of mentally handicapped persons without express written consent of the Commissioner of Human Services. Common law marriages are not valid in the State of Minnesota; however the state does recognize common law marriages that have been validated in other states.

An officiate of the marriage may be a judge or retired judge, a court administrator or retired court administrator, a former court commissioner, ministers or ordained officials of any religious denomination. The officiate must sign three certificates of marriage and have the married party and witnesses sign the certificate. One of the certificates must be filed with the court administrator who issued the license within 5 days of the wedding ceremony. The other two copies are given to the bride and groom.

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