OBTAINING A CALIFORNIA MARRIAGE LICENSE (Family Code section 350 et seq.)
Marriage licenses can be obtained by appointment only at the Ventura County Government Center at the County Clerk’s Office, Hall of Administration, Main Plaza, 800 South Victoria Avenue, Ventura, CA 93009-1260. Call (805) 654-2263 to schedule an appointment. Marriage licenses issued to Ventura County residents only.
Marriage licenses can also be obtained by appointment only at our Thousand Oaks location at 2100 East Thousand Oaks Blvd, Suite A, Thousand Oaks, CA 91362 (We are located in the Civic Arts Plaza). Call (805) 654-2263 to schedule an appointment.
Types of Payment: Cash, Check and Debit and Credit cards. ($2.50 credit card fee per transaction) If you require any special accommodations due to a disability, please contact our office beforehand so we can assist you with your request.
MARRIAGE LICENSE FORMS
The State Registrar prescribes and provides forms for the issuance of five types of marriage licenses (FC Section 355 and H&SC 102200), as well as the Affidavit to Amend a Marriage Record (VS24C). The power of attorney form used for marriages entered into pursuant to FC Section 420(b) is also prescribed by the State Registrar; however, each county is responsible for maintaining the form in their office and distributing them to the public as needed.
The “License and Certificate of Marriage” (VS117) is the standard public marriage license (FC Section 359) – $98.00
The “Confidential License and Certificate of Marriage” (VS 123) may be used by those persons 18 years of age or older who have been living together as spouses. (FC Section 500) – $109.00
The “License and Certificate of Marriage for Denominations Not Having Clergy” (VS115) is used by persons who, due to religious beliefs, are entering into a marriage without the participation of a minister, priest, rabbi, lay leader, or other person authorized to solemnize marriages (FC Section 307) – $98.00
The “License and Certificate of Declaration of Marriage” (VS116) is used by those persons who wish to declare an already existing licensed California marriage for which no official record exists, and more than one year has passed since the date of the marriage (FC Section 425) – $98.00
The “Court Order Delayed Certificate of Marriage” (VS122) is required under any of the following situations:
- When a marriage was performed without benefit of a license or the license expired (All County Letter (ACL) 98-09) and the couple are unwilling to sign and acknowledge on the marriage license that they are not married and/or they do not agree to participate in a second ceremony.
- When the requirements of a License and Certificate of Declaration of Marriage (VS116) cannot be met because the marriage occurred less than one year ago, the couple cannot provide two witnesses who were present at the ceremony; or there is only one spouse available to apply.
- To record a marriage which occurred in another state or country where no record no longer exists, e.g., was destroyed or lost (H&SC Section 103450) Click on this link for more information
Online Public Marriage License Applications Only are now available. When you have COMPLETED your online application and received your reference number, both parties will have to go to the County Government Center in Ventura at the office of the County Clerk and Recorder’s Office, Hall of Administration, Main Plaza, 800 S. Victoria Avenue, Ventura CA 93009-1260, or at the Thousand Oaks location, 2100 East Thousand Oaks Blvd, Suite A, Thousand Oaks, CA 93162 in order to obtain your marriage license.
Please NOTE: Your Internet Online Application will only be kept on file 10 business days from the date submitted to the Clerk and Recorder’s office.
You can also download and complete a Marriage License Application before you come into our office to obtain your marriage license. Both parties have to be present.
POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR MILITARY MARRIAGES
“Power of Attorney” form may only be used when a member of the United States Armed Forces is stationed overseas and serving in a conflict or a war and is unable to personally appear for the license and solemnization of his or her marriage. The marriage may be entered by the appearance of an attorney-in-fact, commissioned and empowered in writing for that purpose through a power of attorney. Please contact our office at (805) 654-2263 if you are interested in learning more about this process.
APPLICANTS 18 YEARS AND OLDER
Both applicants must be present.
DOCUMENTATION REQUIREMENTS: A valid government-issued, picture identification is required to verify name, age, and identity, along with any other document that may be applicable for the issuance of a marriage license (e.g. adoption papers, superior court name change, etc.).
THE NAME EQUALITY ACT OF 2007: Family Code Section 306.5 provides that at the time the application for a marriage license, one or both parties to the marriage may elect to change the middle or last names, or both, by which that party wishes to be known after solemnization of the marriage by entering that information on the marriage license application. For detailed information regarding what can or cannot be changed, please view our Equality Act document.
If you do not bring the appropriate documentation, you will not be issued a marriage license.
The FEE is $98.00 for a public marriage license and $109.00 for a confidential marriage license and you can pay with cash, check, or credit card. Additional fees may be required for any special processing.
There is no waiting period. The license may be used upon issuance. The license is valid for 90 days.
The ceremony may take place anywhere in the State of California. After the ceremony, the license/certificate is returned to the Ventura County Recorder’s Office. After recording, copies may be obtained from the County Recorder’s Office upon request either in person or by mail. The fee for a certified copy is $15.00. County Recorder Office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
APPLICANTS UNDER 18 YEARS OF AGE
Person(s) under the age of 18 will need to contact the Youth Services Center regarding requirements.
Youth Services Center (805) 973-5100
1911 Williams Drive
Oxnard, CA 93030
Youth Services Center (805) 582-8032
3855 Alamo Street, Suite F
Simi Valley, CA 93063
Person(s) under the age of 18 must also have parental and judicial consent to marry. Minor marriage applications are filed in the Superior Court. If approved, the couple will present a certified copy of the court order authorizing them to marry to the County Clerk at the time the marriage license is issued.