How to Get Married in Wisconsin

Applying for a Marriage License in Wisconsin

Amnicon Falls State Park in Wisconsin
Amnicon Falls State Park in Wisconsin. Photo courtesy Wisconsin Department of Tourism

If you've just set a date for your wedding, this can be an exciting time for the two of you! Don't let the marriage license laws of Wisconsin put a dent in your wedding plans.

Here's what you need to know and what documents to bring with you before you apply for a Wisconsin marriage license. We recommend getting this legal aspect of your wedding out of the way about a month before your wedding date.

Congratulations and much happiness as you begin your lifetime journey together!

PLEASE NOTE!! Requirements may vary as each county in Wisconsin could have their own requirements. Check with your County Clerk for changes and clarifications in the requirements before you leave home to apply for your marriage license.

ID Requirement:

You must bring your driver's license with your current address or two pieces of mail with your current address, Social Security Number, and have a certified copy of your birth certificate.

Know your parents full names, mothers' maiden names. Make sure you have the date and place of your marriage ceremony and the name, address and phone number of the officiant.

Make sure you contact your County Clerk's office prior to leaving to get your marriage license. Some counties have different requirements as to required documents.

Residency Requirement:

One of you needs to have resided for at least 30 days in the Wisconsin county where you are applying. If you are from out-of-state, you must apply in the county where the ceremony will take place.

Previous Marriages:

In Wisconsin, you must show proof of divorce, death, or civil annulment from your most recent marriage.

You need to wait six months after a divorce before getting remarried.

Bring a copy of the judgment of divorce, legal annulment or death certificate from your most recent marriage.

Waiting Period in Wisconsin:

There is a waiting period of five days in Wisconsin, exclusive of the day you apply -- so it is really like six days. Check with the County Clerk's office for more information.

"BEST "RULE OF THUMB" (considering weekends, etc.): Apply no less than 7 days before and no more than 35 days before the ceremony."
Source: Walworth County

Covenant Marriage Option


Fees in Wisconsin:

Although the fees for a marriage license in Wisconsin vary from county to county, the average cost is $80.00. Be prepared to pay in cash. Check with the County Clerk in your county to know what the fee will be.

Other Tests:

Wisconsin does not require that you take any blood tests.

Proxy Marriages:

No. Proxy marriages are not allowed in Wisconsin.

Cousin Marriages:

No. Cousin marriages are generally not allowed in Wisconsin, though depending on certain circumstances, such as when the bride is 55 years of age or older, cousins may be allowed to marry. Check with the County Clerk for clarification of your own situation.

Common Law Marriages:

No. Common law marriages are not recognized in Wisconsin.

Same Sex Marriages:

Yes. When the Supreme Court denied reviewing Wisconsin's same-sex marriage case in October 2014, gay marriages were allowed to begin there immediately.

Under 18:

If either the bride or groom is under 18, you must have written, notarized consent from his or her parents or guardian. There is a Consent form available to be signed by parents or guardian before a County Clerk.

If either of you are under the age of 16, you may not get married in Wisconsin.

Officiants in Wisconsin:

Ordained member of the clergy, a judge, a court commissioner, or certain religious appointees. You and your prospective spouse may officiate under established customs or rules of some religions.


The Wisconsin marriage license is valid for thirty (30) days. What this means is you two have 30 days to get married and have your marriage license officially recorded. If you wait past that time frame, you can't get married without applying for and paying for another marriage license. Some Wisconsin counties drop this time frame to two weeks if either one of you is not yet 18 years old.

Copy of Certificate of Marriage:

Vital Records
1 West Wilson Street
P.O. Box 309
Madison, WI 53701
Phone: (608) 266-1371

Still Confused About Getting Married in Wisconsin?

If you are still confused about the different terms used in the marriage license application process, check out these articles:


Please note that I make every effort to offer you common-sense marriage advice and helpful information about marriage on this website, but I am not an attorney and the articles on the site are not to be construed as legal advice.
The information in this article was accurate when it was published. It is important that you verify all information with your local marriage license office or county clerk before making any wedding or travel plans.
The marriage site has a world-wide audience and marriage laws and regulations vary from state to state and country to country. When in doubt, seek legal counsel.
Please notify me of any oversights or errors.