Whatcom County, WA Marriage License Information
If you plan to get married in Whatcom County, WA, or elsewhere within Washington, you must complete a marriage license application. You can get your marriage license in Whatcom County or any other county throughout the state. Locations that distribute marriage licenses are typically located in the County Auditor office. Marriage licenses issued from Whatcom County can be used throughout the state of Washington.
Where Can I Get a Marriage License in Whatcom County, Washington?
Address and Phone Number:
Bellingham, WA 98227
Cost of Marriage License
How much is a marriage license in Whatcom County?
The cost of a Whatcom County marriage license is about $52.00 dollars.
Do in-state or out-of-state residents have different requirements?
No, whether you live in Whatcom County or are just visiting, the standard is the same. You do not have to be a prior or active Whatcom County or Washington resident to get issued a usable marriage license.
Once my application is submitted, when will I get my marriage license?
There is a slight 3 day waiting period following the submission of your application before you can get your license.
Once I get my license, do I have to wait to get married?
There is no extra waiting period once your marriage license is issued. You can go and get married in Whatcom County, or anywhere else within the state.
License Expiration Dates
How long will my license be good for after I get it?
Your Whatcom County marriage license will eventually expire if not used. You have 60 days to use it once it's been issued.
My marriage license expired before I got a chance to use it. Now what?
Your expired marriage license is no longer valid. You can get it reissued from the same Whatcom County office you submitted your original application to.
How old do I have to be to get legally married?
You have to be at least 18 years old in order to marry without getting consent from a parent or legal guardian within Whatcom County.
What if I want to get married, but I'm under 18 years old?
If you are under 18 years of age, you'll need both your parents (or legal guardians) to accompany you to provide consent. Have a certified copy of your birth certificate available. Such copies are typically available in the vital records or recorders office.
Keep in mind that if you were not born in Washington, you'll have to order your certified copy from your state or country of birth. If you were born in Whatcom County, WA, order your certificate from this county. Otherwise, order it from the WA county of your birth.
Do I have to get a blood test?
No, blood tests are not a requirement for getting a marriage license in Whatcom County.
Divorced or Widowed
What if I've been divorced or am a widower?
You are not required to provide a certified copy of your divorce decree or death certificate.
Marriage-Related Name Change
How do I change my name due to marriage?
When you get married, you'll be provided a marriage certificate (filed in Whatcom County) which provides proof of marriage and is the primary document used to facilitate the name change process. You'll use it to complete your name change across various government and non-government institutions.
You can make use of an online marriage name change service to get the process started, before or after you get married in Whatcom County or elsewhere in Washington.
What exactly is a proxy marriage?
Getting married by proxy means you'll have someone stand-in for you at the marriage ceremony. If one or both partners to the marriage aren't able to attend the ceremony, another person (known as the proxy) can take your place.
So, can I get proxy married in Whatcom County?
No, unfortunately you can't get married by proxy in Whatcom County or anywhere else in Washington.
Common Law Marriages
What does common law marriage mean?
A common law marriage is an informal marriage that doesn't hold the same legal authenticity of a standard marriage. It's based on an accepted understanding between the partners that you're basically cohabitating.
Is a common law marriage a legal option for me instead of undergoing a conventional marriage?
No, Whatcom County will not issue marriage licenses for common law marriages. Washington does not recognize common law marriages. Not even if you were common law married in another state. Very few states still do.
Can I legally marry my cousin?
If you are cousins, you cannot get a marriage license from Whatcom County or anywhere else within Washington. Cousin marriages are restricted.
Same-Sex Marriage Recognition
Are same sex marriages legal?
Yes, Whatcom County will issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Washington recognizes same-sex marriages as valid as any other marriage.