If you're getting married in the state of Iowa you must first apply for a wedding license at any in-state county clerk office. These offices, some of which are referred to as the "marriage license bureau," are usually located in the county probate court or circuit court. This document outlines the requirements you must adhere to in order to get a valid marriage license that can be used statewide. Let's begin…

Cost of Your License

How much does a marriage license cost?

The marriage license fee is roughly $35.00 dollars, although fees may vary from county to county. Accepted forms of payment are cash.

Residency Requirement

Are there any special residency conditions for in-state or out-of-state residents?

There are none. You do not have to be a previous or current resident of Iowa to obtain a marriage license that will be valid statewide.

Waiting Period

After I submit my application how long do I have to wait before I receive my marriage license?

There is a mandatory 3 day waiting period before your license is issued to you. In most states, the waiting period does not include Saturdays, Sundays or federal holidays. In some instances, the day the application is filed is not included within the waiting period timeline.

Is there a waiting period from the moment the license is given to me to the date I'm allowed to actually marry?

No, you can get married immediately after your marriage license is issued.

License Expiration

How long will my marriage license remain valid once it's been issued?

Your marriage license will never expire once it's been issued.

What happens if my marriage license expires before I get a chance to use it?

This scenario wouldn't apply to you because, as stated above, your license will not expire once it's been issued to you.

Age Requirement

How old must I be to get married?

You must be at least 18 years of age or older to marry without parental consent. A birth certificate may be necessary to show proof of age.

What if one or both of us is younger than 18?

If either partner is under 18, parents or legal guardians must be present. If a parent can not be present, due to death, separation, divorce or other circumstances, proper evidence must be presented for verification. You will need a certified copy of your birth certificate.

Blood Test

Are blood tests and physical exams required?

No blood test or physical exam is required.

Divorced or Widowed Applicants

What if one or both partners have been divorced or have had a spouse die?

If previously married, the date of divorce or date of spouse's death must be provided.

Marriage Name Change

How do I legally change my name before or after I get married?

When you are married, you will receive a marriage certificate, which is a piece of paper proving that you are legally married. This document will serve as evidence of your marriage, which you'll need to complete the process of notifying several government agencies about your name change, as well as any non-government institutions that you do business with (ie, banks, employers, credit cards, memberships, etc).

There is an online marriage name change kit that you can use and complete before or after your marriage takes place. It's applicable for Iowa or any other state in the union. Completing all the necessary name change documentation prior to your wedding is recommended in order to expedite the name change process.

Proxy Marriage

What is a proxy marriage?

A proxy marriage, also known as a "proxy wedding," is when one or both partners to be married are unable to physically attend the ceremony. The missing person, or persons, will have someone "stand in" for them and serve as their "proxy."

Can I get married by proxy if I'm unable to to be present for the ceremony?

No, getting married by proxy is not allowed in Iowa. There are actually only five states left that do allow marriage by proxy.

Common Law Marriage

What is a common law marriage?

The term "common law marriage" refers to an informal marriage, based upon cohabitation and a mutual understanding by both partners, rather than getting married through a civil or religious ceremony. The latter, more common approach, would require an actual Iowa marriage license.

Is a common law marriage a legal option for me instead of undergoing a conventional marriage?

Yes, common-law marriages are allowed in Iowa. The fact that it is a viable option in this state is notable considering common law marriage is not available in four-fifths of the country.

Cousin Marriage

Can I get married to my cousin?

No, cousin marriages are not allowed.

Same Sex Marriage

Are same sex marriages legal?

Yes, same-sex marriages are allowed and legally recognized in Iowa.

Where to Go

Where do I physically need to go to get my marriage license?

Iowa has 89 offices where a marriage license can be acquired. Simply choose a location below to visit. Phone numbers as well as map and accompanying driving direction links are provided for every address.

Adair County Recorders
400 Public Square
Greenfield, IA 50849
515-743-2411
Adams County Recorder
500 9th And Davis Ave
Corning, IA 50841
515-322-3744
Allamakee County Recorders
110 Allamakee St
Waukon, IA 52172
319-568-2364
Appanoose County Recorder
201 N 12th St
Centerville, IA 52544
515-856-6103
Audubon County Recorder
318 Leroy St, #7
Audubon, IA 50025
712-563-2119
Benton County Clerk
111 E 4th St
Vinton, IA 52349
319-472-3309
Black Hawk County Recorder
316 East Fifth
Waterloo, IA 50706
319-291-2472
Boone County Recorder
210 State
Boone, IA 50036
515-433-0514
Bremer County Recorder
415 E Bremer Ave
Waverly, IA 50677
319-352-0401
Buchanan County Recorder
210 5th Ave, N.E.
Independence, IA 50644
319-334-4259
Buena Vista County Recorder
East 5th Court House Square
Storm Lake, IA 50588
712-749-2539
Butler County Recorder
428 6th St
Allison, IA 50602
319-267-2735
Calhoun County Recorder
416 4th St, # 3
Rockwell City, IA 50579
712-297-8121
Carroll County Recorder
6th & Main
Carroll, IA 51401
712-792-3328
Cass County Recorder
5 W 7th St
Atlantic, IA 50022
712-243-1692
Cedar County Recorders Courthouse
400 Cedar St
Tipton, IA 52772
319-886-2230
Cerro Gordo County Recorder
220 North Washington
Mason City, IA 50401
515-421-3056
Chickasaw County Recorder
8 E Prospect St
New Hampton, IA 50659
515-394-2336
Clay County Recorder
P.O. Box 7306
Spencer, IA 51301
712-262-1081
Clayton County
111 High St
Elkader, IA 52043
319-245-2710
Clinton County Recorder
301 Main Ave
Clinton, IA 52732
319-244-0223
Crawford County Recorder
P.O. Box 442
Dennison, IA 51442
712-263-3643
Dallas County Recorder
801 Court St, # 203
Adel, IA 50003
515-993-5804
Decatur Recorders
201 N Main St
Leon, IA 50144
515-446-4322
Delaware County Recorder
301 E Main St
Manchester, IA 52057
319-927-4665
Des Moines County Recorder
513 N Main St
Burlington, IA 52601
319-753-8221
Dickenson County Recorder
18th & Hill St
Spirit Lake, IA 51360
712-336-1495
Dubuque County
720 Central
Dubuque, IA 52001
319-589-4434
Emmet County Recorder
609 First Ave North
Esterville, IA 51334
712-362-4115
Fayette County Recorder
P.O. Box 226
West Union, IA 52175
319-422-3687
Floyd County Recorder
Courthouse 101 South Main
Charles City, IA 50616
515-257-6154
Franklin County Recorder
P.O. Box 26
Hampton, IA 50441
515-456-5675
Fremont County Recorder
P.O. Box 295
Sidney, IA 51652
712-374-2315
Greene County Recorders 114 North Chesnut
Courthouse
Jefferson, IA 50129
515-386-3716
Grundy County Recorder
706 G Ave
Grundy Center, IA 50638
319-824-3234
Guthrie County Recorder
205 N Fifth
Guthrie Center, IA 50115
515-747-3412
Hamilton County Recorder
P.O. Box 126
Webster City, IA 50595
515-832-9535
Hancock County Recorder
855 State St
Garner, IA 50438
515-923-2464
Hardin County Recorder
Hardin County Courthouse
Eldora, IA 50627
515-939-8178
Harrison County Recorder
111 N 2nd Ave
Logan, IA 51546
712-644-2545
Henry County Recorder Main & Washington
Courthouse Building
Mt. Pleasant, IA 52641
319-385-0765
Humboldt County Recorder
203 Main
Dakota City, IA 50529
515-332-3693
Ida County Recorder
401 Moorehead St
Ida Grove, IA 51445
712-364-2220
Iowa County Recorder
P.O. Box 185 Court Ave
Marengo, IA 52301
319-642-3622
Jackson County Recorder
201 West Platt
Maquoketa, IA 52060
319-652-2504
Jasper County Recorder
County Courthouse, Room 205
Newton, IA 50208
515-792-5442
Jean Richardson County Recorder
300 N Pine St
Creston, IA 50801
515-782-7616
Jefferson County Recorder
51 W Briggs Ave
Fairfield, IA 52556
515-472-4331
Johnson County Recorder
913 South Dubuque
Iowa City, IA 52244
319-356-6093
Jones County Recorder
500 W Main St, # 116
Anamosa, IA 52205
319-462-2477
Kossuth County
114 West State St
Algona, IA 50511
515-295-5660
Lee County Recorder
P.O. Box 160
Keokuk, IA 52632
319-524-1126
Lee County Recorders
P.O. Box 322
Fort Madison, IA 52627
319-372-4662
Linn County Recorder
930 1st S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404
319-398-3441
Louisa County Recorder
117 South Main
Wapello, IA 52653
319-523-5361
Lucas County Recorder
916 Braden Ave
Chariton, IA 50049
515-774-2413
Lyon County Recorder
206 S 2nd Ave
Rock Rapids, IA 51246
712-472-2381
Madison County Recorder
P.O. Box 152
Winterset, IA 50273
515-462-3771
Mahaska County Recorder
106 S 1st St
Oskaloosa, IA 52577
515-673-8187
Marion County Recorder
214 E Main St
Knoxville, IA 50138
515-828-2211
Marshall County Recorder
1 E Main St
Marshalltown, IA 50158
515-754-6355
Mills County Recorder
418 Sharp St
Glenwood, IA 51534
712-527-9315
Mitchell County Recorder
508 State St
Osage, IA 50461
515-732-5861
Monona County Recorder
610 Iowa Ave
Onawa, IA 51040
712-423-2575
Monroe County Recorder
10 Benton Ave E
Albia, IA 52531
515-932-5164
Montgomery County Recorder
P.O. Box 469
Red Oak, IA 51566
712-623-4363
Muscatine County Recorder
401 East 3rd
Muscatine, IA 52761
319-263-7741
Obrien County Recorder
155 S Hayes Ave
Primghar, IA 51245
712-757-3045
Osceola County Recorder
300 7th St
Sibley, IA 51249
712-754-3345
Page County Recorder
112 E Main St
Clarinda, IA 51632
712-542-3130
Palo Alto County Recorder
1010 Broadway St
Emmetsburg, IA 50536
712-852-3701
Plymouth County Recorder
214 4th Ave SE
Le Mars, IA 51031
712-546-4020
Polk County Recorder
2nd & Court Ave
Des Moines, IA 50309
515-286-3160
Pottawattamie County Recorder
227 South Sixth St
Council Bluffs, IA 51501
712-328-5612
Poweshiek County Recorder
302 East Main
Montezuma, IA 50171
515-623-5434
Sac County Recorder
100 NW State St
Sac City, IA 50583
712-662-7789
Shelby County Recorder
1313 Industrial Pkwy
Harlan, IA 51537
712-755-5640
Sioux County Recorder
P.O. Box 100
Orange City, IA 51041
712-737-2229
Story County Recorder
900 6th St
Nevada, IA 50201
515-382-7230
Tama County Recorder
P.O. Box 82
Toledo, IA 52342
515-484-3320
Wapello County Recorder
101 W 4th St
Ottumwa, IA 52501
515-683-0045
Warren County Recorder
P.O. Box 163
Indianola, IA 50125
515-961-1089
Washington County Recorder
110 West Main
Washington, IA 52353
319-653-7727
Webster County Recorder
701 Central Ave
Fort Dodge, IA 50501
515-576-2401
Winnebago County Recorder
126 South Clark
Forest City, IA 50436
515-582-2094
Winnesheik County Recorder
201 West Main St
Decorah, IA 52101
319-382-3486
Woodbury County Recorder
Courthouse, Room 106
Sioux City, IA 51101
712-279-6528
Worth County Recorder
1000 Central Ave
Northwood, IA 50459
515-324-2734
Wright County Recorder
115 North Main
Clarion, IA 50525
515-532-3204