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Marriage Licenses and Ceremonies are by Appointment Only

Click to make an appointment

Appointments are currently available up to .

Outdoor marriage ceremonies are subject to change based on availability; including, but not limited to: weather,
obstructions, Waterfront Park events or maintenance.
For a list of scheduled dates impacting the County
Administration Center’s west arbor ceremony location, click here. This list is also subject to change.

Click image above to watch a video on how to get a marriage license in San Diego.


  • You must obtain a marriage license prior to having a ceremony.
  • A ceremony must take place within 90 days of the license issuance and within the State of California.
    • No extensions are authorized.
    • If you do not have a ceremony within 90 days, you must purchase a new marriage license.
  • After the ceremony, the marriage license must be signed by your officiant and returned to our office for registration, preferably by mail.
  • After the license is registered, you may request and purchase a copy of your marriage certificate, which is the  proof of marriage.
  • Our office only registers licenses issued in San Diego County.
  • A license issued by our office can be used for a ceremony anywhere in California.
  • Licenses are non-refundable.
  • Appointments fill up quickly so please plan accordingly.

General Requirements

  • Appointments are required. Schedule an appointment for your license and/or ceremony prior to submitting the Marriage License Online Application.
  • Complete the Marriage License Online Application (recommended).
  • Both parties must appear together to their in-person appointment.
  • Both parties must present valid, government-issued photo ID.
  • Ceremonies are performed in English or Spanish. If the commissioner feels that either party does not comprehend the marriage process, he/she may refuse to perform the ceremony and offer other options.
    • Performing a ceremony in any other language is not permissible by County Clerk staff. 
    • Prior to booking an appointment online, couples requiring American Sign Language (ASL) for marriage services must notify our office in person, by phone at (619) 237-0502, or by email at arccsdmarriagehelp.fgg@sdcounty.ca.gov to make arrangements. Please allow a minimum of two weeks' advance notice for all sign language bookings.
  • Both parties must be 18 years old or older.
    • If either party is under 18, please contact us directly at (619) 237-0502.
  • Both parties must be unmarried at the time the license is issued.
    • If either party was previously married and the dissolution is not yet final, even if it will be final before the wedding date, you will not be issued a marriage license.
    • If the dissolution was final within the past 90 days, please provide a copy of the final judgment.
    • If you are in a State Registered Domestic Partnership (SRDP), you may not enter into a marriage or be issued a license with someone other than your registered domestic partner, unless the most recent domestic partnership has been terminated or a final judgment of dissolution or nullity has been entered.
  • You do not need to be a U.S. Citizen or California resident.
  • A blood test is not required.

Additional Information

  • A marriage ceremony may be performed at the venue of your choice by persons authorized to solemnize marriage ceremonies in California.  The County Clerk may perform a civil marriage ceremony for an additional fee, if desired.
  • You will NOT receive a copy of your marriage certificate unless you request and pay for a certified copy.  Certified copies may be purchased approximately 10 business days after the marriage license has been received by our office and registered with the Recorder.
  • An active-duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States who is stationed overseas serving in a conflict or a war AND is unable to appear for the issuance of a license and solemnization of the marriage may enter into the marriage by the appearance of a military proxy, commissioned and empowered in writing for that purpose through a power of attorney.  For more information, please contact our offices at (619) 237-0502.
  • An active-duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States who is deploying soon and wishes to get married prior to deployment should call us at (619) 237-0502.
  • The Name Equality Act of 2007 gives specific rights to parties at the time they are applying for a California marriage license in order to choose and list, on the marriage license, the new name that each party will go by after marriage.

Public Marriage License

  • Public Marriage License fee is $70.00.
  • This is the most common type of marriage license.
  • Must have at least one witness present at the ceremony.
  • No more than two witnesses may sign the official marriage license after the ceremony.
  • No age requirement to be a witness in California; but must be old enough to know that they are witnessing a marriage ceremony AND must be able to sign their own name on the official marriage license without assistance.

Confidential Marriage License

  • Confidential Marriage License fee is $89.00.
  • No witnesses required to be at the ceremony.
  • No witnesses sign the official marriage license.
  • Couples must be living together as spouses at the time they apply for the marriage license and must sign under penalty of perjury attesting to that fact.
  • Persons other than the married couple requesting copies of a confidential marriage certificate may only do so by presenting a court order.
  • Confidential marriage licenses may also be issued by an Authorized Notary Public.  An Authorized Notary Public may be available to the public outside of normal business hours and office locations.  Please confirm availability with the Notary Public directly. Please click to find an Authorized Notary Public in San Diego County.

Click here to learn more about Civil Marriage Ceremonies.

After the Ceremony, Registering the Marriage License

  • The person solemnizing the marriage must complete, sign, and return the original marriage license to our office for registration within ten (10) days, preferably by mail.
  • If a marriage license is lost, damaged, or destroyed after the marriage ceremony, or if there are errors or alterations on the marriage license that are deemed unacceptable for registration by the County Recorder, then the person solemnizing the marriage will be required to purchase and obtain a duplicate marriage license.


Click for a complete list of fees.

Payment may be made using cash, check, and credit or debit card.  Payments by check or money order should be made payable to "San Diego Recorder/County Clerk".  When using a credit or debit card, a $2.50 surcharge per transaction will apply.

Commemorative Keepsakes

  • Framed Digital Photograph - $10.00
    • Portion of proceeds benefit the Polinsky Children’s Center
  • Wedding Ring - $10.00
  • Wedding Keepsake Certificate - $6.00
  • “Just Married” Bumper Sticker - $4.00

If you have additional questions, please call (619) 237-0502. Se habla Español.