It'll cost you $30.50 to $90.00, and you'll have to use it within 60 days. Proxy Marriages Pennsylvania: No. Margaret: Good afternoon, everyone. So, what is the difference between a self-uniting marriage license and a regular marriage license? Couples in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Bucks Counties who had been married by officiants without congregations then asked the courts to determine whether their marriages were valid, according to the ACLU; judges ruled that they were. If you want this type of license, you need to inform the clerk before you begin the application process. What's the marriage certificate fee? These marriages only require the signatures of two witnesses in place of an officiant. FEES The fee for a marriage license varies from county to county. If you're getting married in Pennsylvania, you must first apply for a marriage license. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Exactly the opposite. If you do want to self-unite, consider asking Celebrant Robin to create your ceremony or guide you through the writing. Marriage Licenses Marriage Licenses. So are there any legal issues with having someone who was ordained online officiate your wedding in Pennsylvania? 10. These marriages only require the signatures of two witnesses in place of an officiant. Thanks to a 2007 Federal judge ruling that allows Pennsylvania couples a self-uniting marriage without showing proof of membership with a Quaker or Bahai religion. According to Philadelphia’s Marriage License Office, between 2009 (the earliest date available) and 2016, self-uniting marriage applications have gone up 166 percent, with 956 licenses … Cousin Marriages Pennsylvania: No. You can simply become married by applying for a Quaker or self-uniting license. Keep in mind that there may be an additional fee for this type of license. We decided on a self uniting because it seemed to be the easiest route for us. In 2007, there was a dispute in Allegheny County over whether people had to be Quaker or Baha’i to be given a self-uniting license. So we plan to have an actual ceremony/reception … Return to top Pennsylvania has recognized such marriages for centuries (due to its Quaker origins and history of religious tolerance) and has offered licenses for these marriages for decades. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. The marriage license can be used in any county in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania . On Monday, State Sen. Lawrence Farnese (D., Philadelphia) introduced a bill in Harrisburg that would add “civil celebrants” to the list of people qualified to marry others to aid couples who don’t want religious ceremonies, but under the proposal, the civil celebrants would be required to complete at least 120 hours of study to qualify. Self Uniting marriage license Legal Problems are not always your fault! Using a self-uniting license can give a couple flexibility for their ceremony, or lack thereof. There are 2 types of marriage licenses issued in Pennsylvania: A self-uniting marriage license. That leaves Pennsylvania county courts at odds with each other, but the issue was never elevated to a state appeals court. Having Mickey’s college roommate preside seemed like a good fit for their traditional but nonreligious ceremony in Phoenixville. CONTACT US. To apply for a marriage license in Pennsylvania, start by checking with the state government website to verify that you and your partner are eligible to be married. Otherwise, self-uniting licenses are similar to the traditional version, which is signed by an officiant, and legally valid. A self-uniting marriage license is a relative rarity, available only in a few states in the U.S., including here in Pennsylvania, where some county clerks are reluctant to issue them to anyone other than Quakers, for whom they were originally intended. Mayors of the cities and boroughs are also authorized to perform marriage ceremonies." Types of Marriage Licenses. There is a simple solution: the self-uniting marriage license. Otherwise, self-uniting licenses are similar to the traditional version, which is signed by an officiant, and legally valid. But in Pennsylvania, getting married doesn't even have to be that formal. I have a medical condition that have to have good insurance and unfortunately my new job does not provide that which has put myself into a ton of debt. Two witnesses are required. We are scheduling 30-minute virtual marriage license appointments via Microsoft Teams (a free video platform) and limited in-person appointments, for Delaware County, Pennsylvania residents only AND for out-of-state and out-of-county couples who will be celebrating their special day at a Delaware County, PA venue who have documented confirmation. Thanks to a 2007 Federal judge ruling that allows Pennsylvania couples a self-uniting marriage without showing proof of membership with a Quaker or Bahai religion. There are typically two types of ceremonies where you can marry without an officiant: a civil wedding and a self-uniting marriage. ( Log Out /  Like the "self uniting" marriage license, it varies from county to county. Last year, about half of U.S. weddings were officiated by a friend or family member, according to an annual study by wedding website the Knot. In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it is legal for couples to unite themselves in marriage, in front of witnesses, without an officiant needing to sign the marriage license. They offer a level of flexibility that a traditional marriage license lacks – allowing a friend to officiate your wedding day without asking them to take on the responsibility of being ordained online or allowing you to lead your own wedding celebration. That means no third party is required for you two lovebirds to tie the knot officially. The price varies by county. Expiration Date of Marriage License Pennsylvania: A marriage license is valid for 60 days from date it is issued. She and her husband-to-be planned to wed at the chapel in Portugal where her parents had been married, but they needed to get married legally in the U.S. first. Contrary to how it is presented on their website, the fee for that county is only an additional $10, making the entire affair $90 TOTAL. FEES The fee for a marriage license varies from county to county. Two witnesses are required. A certified copy of your marriage certificate costs between $10 and $25. 2) Can we get the license the same day we apply or do we have to wait the 3-day period post-application process? Representatives of the Lawrence County Orphans’ Court, which issues marriage licenses, declined to be interviewed. That means a couple can have someone emcee the ceremony as a symbolic but not legal officiant. Does a self-uniting marriage license cost extra? Updates, Events & Useful Tips Surrounding Family Law Issues. “Self-Uniting License”: Pennsylvania has a standard marriage license that must be officiated by someone, as well as a “self-uniting license.” If you get a self-uniting license, you and two witnesses will sign the license after you have married your partner. A reader contacted Curious Philly, our Q&A forum that invites readers to send in queries about topics of interest, and asked whether marriages officiated by friends are valid in this state. Tori and Mickey Nuccio, of Phoenixville, were married at Franklin Commons in August 2016. Pennsylvania is one of the few states that offers couples the option of a self-uniting marriage license. These licenses sometimes cost a little more than the type that requires an officiant. But, she added, couples who are nervous could use a self-uniting license instead, as the Nuccios did. Blasphemous? Self Uniting Marriage License Lancaster County Pa Assessor Database; Self Uniting Marriage License Lancaster County Pa Assessors; Lancaster Pa Courthouse Marriage License • Applications are taken Monday-Friday, 8:30am-4:00pm • Blood tests are not required. “[It] meant we could plan everything else the way we wanted it to be.”, © 2021 The Philadelphia Inquirer, LLC Terms of Use/Privacy Policy/California Notice California residents do not sell my data request. A Self-Uniting Marriage ceremony was what we wanted. UPDATE: A reader was recently issued a self-uniting marriage license in Philadelphia county. Most notably, in 2007, the ACLU of PA sued the Allegheny County Register of Wills for denying a couple a self-uniting license. – Celebrant Robin. Change ). Live. Pennsylvania law permits couples to obtain self-uniting marriage licenses, which allow parties to marry each other without a third-party officiant. Representatives of the Lawrence County Orphans’ Court, which issues marriage licenses, declined to be interviewed. Box 1528 New Castle, PA 16101 Ph: 724.656.3100 My guy and I are interested in obtaining a self-uniting marriage license in the Philadelphia county. This is true even if you applied in Chester County but were married in another county of the Commonwealth. The marriage license can be used in any county in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania . A 2007 Federal judge ruling that allows Pennsylvania couples a self-uniting marriage without showing proof of membership with a Quaker or Bahai religion. For a definitive statewide ruling, the question would have to be taken to an appellate court, said MaryCatherine Roper, deputy legal director for the ACLU of Pennsylvania. Blasphemous? Virginia and Tennessee don’t generally recognize ministers ordained by the Universal Life Church, which runs one of the major ordination websites. Expiration Date of Marriage License Pennsylvania: A marriage license is valid for 60 days from date it is issued. § 1503, ... Our office will issue a Self-uniting marriage license as provided by the Marriage Law, 23 Pa.C.S. Other couples ask a friend or relative to create and conduct the ceremony as the couple self-unites. ( Log Out /  Some couples self-unite by creating and conducting their own ceremonies. Once granted, licenses of both types are valid for 60 days in any Pennsylvania county. Self-uniting marriages have been an accepted means of getting married for Quakers in Pennsylvania since 1682. View All Posts. The Nuccios, of Phoenixville, came up with a commonly used solution: They had their friend preside over their August 2016 marriage, but they got a self-uniting marriage license, instead. The couple used a self-uniting marriage license, and a good friend, Tim Jimenez, center, presided over their ceremony. MARRIAGE: IF YOU WANT IT DONE RIGHT, DO IT YOURSELF. Pennsylvania Family Law. Sabelli said they’re popular among people who are planning smaller, cheaper weddings or second marriages. Self-uniting marriage license in PA? Pennsylvania Family Law. You see the state we live, Pennsylvania, honors this marriage thanks to its Quaker origins. Human Services and Care. If you live near a county other than the one you live in, try giving them a call to see what their fees (and jerk levels) are. This is referred to as a self-uniting license. 101 South Mercer St., Room 401 P.O. Except for the format of the license, the requirements for a self-uniting license and a standard license are the same. in PA is ongoing and not in dispute, but their issuance for secular applicants is embroiled in controversy. This might be a helpful option if you are not having a ceremony with other guests. EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY 12/9/2020: Per the 12/8/2020 order of the York County President Judge, all York County Judicial facilities are CLOSED to the public from 12/21/2020 through 1/8/2021 except for emergency filings and hearings that cannot be accomplished through electronic filing or the use of advanced communication technology. By Fox Rothschild LLP on October 29, 2007. The issuance of self-uniting marriage licenses is controversial, however. You must inform the clerk that you want a self-uniting license at the time that you apply. A Pennsylvania marriage license costs $30 to $90. By Fox Rothschild LLP on October 29, 2007. Once granted, licenses of both types are valid for 60 days in any Pennsylvania county. The marriage license can be used in any county in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; however, a PA license … Where can I get my marriage license? Login. “When you trust a friend, you can kind of know that they’re going to take care of you,” said Julia Gwiazdowski, 27, of Philadelphia, who was married to her wife in 2017 by a friend who got ordained online. How do I get a self-uniting license? Please call the Pike County Register of Wills office for their fees and other requirements. ( Log Out /  The source of the confusion over Pennsylvania’s rules for marriage started in the mid-2000s when, in separate cases, county clerks questioned self-uniting licenses and the use of officiants ordained online. They would not accept this type of marriage license (I had my new SS card and the original license). Pennsylvania has recognized such marriages for centuries (due to its Quaker origins and history of religious tolerance) and has offered licenses for these marriages for decades. ×Find information regarding COVID-19. If you want this type of license, you need to inform the clerk before you begin the application process. They weren’t the first Pennsylvania couple to worry about that technicality. Shannon McLaughlin Abel and Jayson Abel turned to a self-uniting license when they wanted Jayson’s uncle to officiate their wedding. (Procession begins with music) We are gathered here today in this beautiful historic park setting to witness Rebekah and Scott pledge their love to each other. Located in the Philadelphia, PA region, Celebrant Robin is a wedding officiant, memorial service officiant, and life-event officiant. Human Services; Kane Community Living Centers Marriage License Bureau Room 415 City Hall Philadelphia, PA 19107 : TELEPHONE. A self-uniting marriage license does not require an officiant to solemnize the marriage. I was happy to read about self-uniting (aka "quaker") marriage licenses which are legal in PA. Our experience today was we went to the City County building, asked to apply for a self-uniting license (we pre-filled the online application so they already had all our info in the computer and we just had to show ID and verify the info). A marriage license issued in any Pennsylvania county can be used in any other Pennsylvania county. YES! Colorado and Washington, D.C., have similar types of marriage licenses. Copy of Certificate of Marriage License. Pennsylvania has a provision in the Marriage Act that recognizes a marriage performed without officiating clergy. Some Examples. Any marriage solemnized under this statute is and will be valid as long as it was authorized by statute. The ceremony is about to begin. See Pennsylvania Statutes, Title 23, Chapter 13, § 1304, section (e) for more information. Pennsylvania has recognized such marriages for centuries (due to its Quaker origins and history of religious tolerance) and has offered licenses for these marriages for decades. That’s up from 40% in 2015 and 29% in 2009. Since April 6th, the Philadelphia Register of Wills has only issued virtual marriage licenses for self-uniting ceremonies in emergency situations. § 1502. The laws of Pennsylvania state that you … But Mickey remembered learning in law school about a York County court ruling from more than a decade ago that put weddings officiated by someone ordained online in a legal gray area. The issuance of self-uniting marriage licenses is controversial, however. “We don’t think anybody is in any legal danger by using an internet-confirmed minister,” Roper said. . But the judge in the September 2007 federal lawsuit against PA's Allegheny County in her order (.pdf) that PA "permits as a matter of statute the issuance of self-uniting marriage licenses" regardless whether whether the marriage is religious or secular. Quaker/ Self-Uniting License fee varies by county. Marriage Certificate . according to an annual study by wedding website the Knot, California residents do not sell my data request. The white license originates from the fact that there is no official clergy in Quakerism. Philly's moon tree came from a seed taken aboard Apollo 14. “It was a great experience for us,” said Curcio, now 35 and eight years married. I live in Chester County but my marriage is taking place in another county in Pennsylvania. How do I get a self-uniting license? Everything worked out great until I went to the PA DMV to change my last name on my driver’s license. When Mickey and Tori Nuccio got engaged, they knew they wanted a close friend to officiate their wedding. YES!!!! After this case, many counties in Pennsylvania provide self-uniting marriage licenses, regardless of the couple’s religion. If either applicant cannot speak or understand English, he/ she must be accompanied by a translator who possesses current, valid photo I.D. In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, there are two types of marriage licenses: the yellow license, which clergy sign; and the white license, which simply requires two witnesses to confirm they observed the couple signing their self-uniting marriage license. Marriage laws vary by state, but online ordination is generally legal in most of the country. My husband and I took the self uniting license route. Blasphemous? Would you like to have an at-home wedding? “It was really special for a family member to marry us,” said McLaughlin Abel, 29, and the marriage license process was easy. Self-uniting marriage is an option in Pennsylvania, one that’s authorized by state law. These marriages only require the signatures of two witnesses in place of an officiant. Live. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Pennsylvania has recognized such(a) marriages for centuries due to its Quaker origins and history of religious tolerance and has produced licenses for these marriages for decades. The issuance of self-uniting marriage licenses is controversial, however. Self-uniting marriage licenses for members of religious faiths without clergy (Quakers, etc.) Here are the answers you need to plan your wedding. What is a Pennsylvania Self-Uniting marriage license? A traditional marriage license. 10. (A caution: Not all friends or family members are good at conducting ceremonies.). In Pennsylvania records of marriage licenses are maintained in the county where you applied for the license. 7. self uniting marriage license. This might be a helpful option if you are not having a ceremony with other guests. The ACLU argued that placing a … Marriage license fees in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania vary from county to county. Several months later, they went to Portugal for their dream wedding day. In Pennsylvania records of marriage licenses are maintained in the county where you applied for the license. Box 1528 New Castle, PA 16101 Ph: 724.656.3100 These marriages only require the signatures of two witnesses in place of an officiant. Self-uniting marriages have been an accepted means of getting married for Quakers in Pennsylvania since 1682. If the license is not used within the 60 day period, the marriage license must be returned and the application process must be repeated in its entirety and the fee re-paid. Self-Uniting. Exactly the opposite. Wedding Officiant and Ceremony Specialist in PA and NJ. Self-Uniting Marriage Licenses If a self-uniting license is required, inform the clerk before the application process begins. § 1502. And when might you choose a self-uniting license? This is referred to as a self-uniting license. Self-uniting marriages have been an accepted means of getting married for Quakers in Pennsylvania since 1682. No. What's the marriage license fee? Delaware residents who got married in Old City in January, they were worried about the legality of an online ordination in Pennsylvania and they liked that obtaining the license — which adds $10 to the standard $90 marriage license fee in Philadelphia — was much cheaper than hiring an ordained officiant. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. In Pennsylvania, the law also lets those who attend similar self-uniting ceremonies — held in any “religious” setting — to vouch as official witnesses on locally issued marriage licenses. A federal judge put the question to rest with an order that the couple in question be allowed to marry regardless of their religious faith, saying that self-uniting licenses have been issued in Pennsylvania “without regard to the religious or nonreligious affiliations of the parties.”. During the spring, the governor of Tennessee signed a law banning such weddings. 9. Please inform the clerk when you start your application if you wish to use this type of license so we may use the correct form. Copy of Certificate of Marriage License. The ceremony need not be performed in the county in which the license was issued but must be performed in the state of Pennsylvania. The unique Pennsylvania license, which is a Quaker tradition, allows people to marry themselves without an officiant, just witnesses. 7. “Self-Uniting License”: Pennsylvania has a standard marriage license that must be officiated by someone, as well as a “self-uniting license.” If you get a self-uniting license, you and two witnesses will sign the license after you have married your partner. Human Services; Kane Community Living Centers This is true even if you applied in Chester County but were married in another county of the Commonwealth. If a self-uniting license is required, inform the clerk before the application process begins. Please take your seats. “I think people get a little scared that it’s not legal … [but] it’s completely legal, and it’s pretty special.”. The unique Pennsylvania license, which is a Quaker tradition, allows people to marry themselves without an officiant, just witnesses. A federal judge blocked the law, allowing marriages to go forward until a lawsuit filed by some Tennessee ministers ordained online goes to trial. You asked about self-uniting marriage license. That means a couple can have someone emcee the ceremony as a symbolic but not … Updates, Events & Useful Tips Surrounding Family Law Issues. ( Log Out /  In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it is legal for couples to unite themselves in marriage, in front of witnesses, without an officiant needing to sign the marriage license. Where is it now? Application/Marriage License: $50.00; Application/Self-Uniting Marriage License: $75.00; Web Conference Zoom Meeting Request: $5.00; Waiver of 3-day waiting period for non-military purposes: $40.00; Waiver of 3-day waiting period for military purposes: $25.00; Certified copy of marriage license: $10.00; Reprint of marriage license: $50.00 In a few US states, it's possible for some couples to have a self-uniting (or self-solemnizing) marriage. Since Pennsylvania was founded by Quakers (William Penn), no marriage ceremony is required. ×Find information regarding COVID-19. Re: PA self-uniting marriages. PA State Law says that "any ordained minister, priest or rabbi of any regularly established church or congregation, Judges, and Justices of Peace may perform wedding ceremonies. Why does the Wells Fargo Building have its own zip code? When you go to the marriage bureau to get a license, tell them that you want a Self-Uniting license. Common Law Marriages Pennsylvania: No. This is referred to as a self-uniting license… I have appealed the decision with PennDot, but have not heard back yet. Like the "self uniting" marriage license, it varies from county to county. “We were able to make the vows more reflective of what we felt was important to a marriage.”. YES! 9. It worked for Sophia Curcio’s destination wedding. Subscribe to self uniting marriage license. We will schedule your appointment only AFTER you have completed the Marriage License Online Pre-Application Form AND paid the $60 fee (+$1.80 technology/CC fee) by credit card for your license online through ConvergePay AND emailed (1) copies of your state-issued IDs, (2) your Online Payment: Order Confirmation Email received from ConvergePay, and (3) any certified divorce decrees and/or death … For now, though, having someone who was ordained online marry you is considered legal by the ACLU, courts in three counties have agreed, and no court challenge to such marriages has been made again in Pennsylvania in the 12 years since. Self-Uniting Marriage License The Wedding of Rebekah and Scott. EFFECTIVE 12/07/2020: The Clerk of Courts Office is open to the public for marriage licenses, however, due to COVID - 19 social distancing practices, please call 717-261-3805 to schedule an appointment. Then, plan to apply at least 3 business days before your wedding, since most PA counties require a 72 hour waiting period. 101 South Mercer St., Room 401 P.O. Then, you can use that ceremony as you unite each other wherever and whenever you choose. A self-uniting marriage license is a legal document that allows a couple to be married in the absence of an officiant. The Nuccios, of Phoenixville, came up with a commonly used solution: They had their friend preside over their August 2016 marriage, but they got a self-uniting marriage license, instead. Posted in Divorce. self uniting marriage license. The issuance of self-uniting marriage licenses is controversial, however. Pennsylvania law permits couples to obtain self-uniting marriage licenses, which allow parties to marry each other without a third-party officiant. • The fee is $75 payable by cash or credit card. Exactly the opposite. Posted in Divorce. It could be decided more definitively in the future if anyone sued over the validity of a marriage or challenged the York County ruling. Our office will issue a Self-uniting marriage license as provided by the Marriage Law, 23 Pa.C.S. Recently, my husband and I attended a self-uniting wedding ceremony for the daughter of close friends. The fee for a marriage license is $90.00 *, payable by Visa, MasterCard, ... Quaker/ Self-Uniting License: $100.00 : Lost License: $10.00: 11. EFFECTIVE 12/07/2020: The Clerk of Courts Office is open to the public for marriage licenses, however, due to COVID - 19 social distancing practices, please call 717-261-3805 to schedule an appointment. “You yourself could go online today, sign up for $39, and be ordained — and according to our attorney, that’s valid,” said Guy Sabelli, first deputy of Philadelphia Orphans’ Court, who oversees the city’s marriage license and marriage records departments. A Self-Uniting License requires both members of the couple plus two witnesses to sign the license on the day of your wedding. In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, there are two types of marriage licenses: the yellow license, which clergy sign; and the white license, which simply requires two witnesses to confirm they observed the couple signing their self-uniting marriage license.