• Marriage & Civil Union License Information

    To apply for a marriage or civil union license, both you and your intended partner must appear in person at the license counter at the Office of the Clerk and Recorder, located on the first floor of the Webb Municipal Office Building, 201 W. Colfax Ave., Denver. HOURS TO APPLY FOR A LICENSE ARE 8:00 A.M. - 4:30 P.M., MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY. Our office is closed on municipal holidays and city budget furlough days.

    How to Apply For a Marriage or Civil Union License

    To apply for a marriage or civil union license, both you and your intended partner must appear in person at the marriage/civil union license counter at the Office of the Clerk and Recorder, located on the first floor of the Webb Municipal Office Building, 201 W. Colfax Ave., Denver.

    Save time when you come in for your license by filling in your license application online.

    Hours to obtain a marriage license are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Our office is closed on municipal holidays and city budget furlough days.

    You must be able to provide the following to obtain a marriage license:

    • Provide the date that you are getting married
    • Tell whether you are getting married in the State of Colorado (license only valid in this state)
    • Tell whether you have been married before and if you are widowed or divorced and be able to provide the exact date and location of your divorce   or spouse's death. Both bride and groom must be able to provide this information
    • If you are related by blood, be sure to state how you are related
    • Provide the city and state where parents of both bride and groom were born
    • Be able to answer how you are marrying. Judge? Religious? Self-solemnization
    • You must have $30.00 cash, check or credit card (Visa, MasterCard or Discover) for the marriage license fee.
       

    You and your intended spouse each must present one of these valid forms of identification:

    • U.S. state-issued driver's license or permit
    • U.S. state-issued ID
    • U.S. military ID
    • Passport (with certified English-language translation if non-English

    Please note the name on the license will appear exactly as it is on the ID you provide.

    Additionally, if you have a Social Security number you are required to provide it. If the bride or groom/partner does not have a Social Security number (they are from another country, or they are in the process of obtaining U.S. citizenship)they are not required to have one to get married.

    Please Note: Birth certificates, baptismal certificates and Mexican Consular IDs (Matricula Consular) are not acceptable for marriage or civil union license applications.

    Other Requirements

    In addition to the above requirements, minors and those remarrying have additional requirements. See the accompanying section for information on remarriages. 

    • Blood tests are not required in Colorado, and there is no waiting period.
    • Applicants need not be Colorado residents.
    • The marriage license is valid for 35 days.
    • Be prepared to supply the place of birth (city and state) of each of your parents.
    • The completed marriage certificate (and attached license) must be returned to the Clerk and Recorder for recording within 63 days after solemnization. After that date, late fees will apply.

    Prohibited Marriages

    The following marriages are prohibited in the State of Colorado:
    • A same-sex marriage.
    • A marriage entered into prior to the dissolution of an earlier marriage of either of the parties, unless the earlier marriage is a currently valid marriage between the two applicant parties.
    • A marriage between an ancestor and descendant, brother and sister, uncle and niece, or aunt and nephew, whether the relationship is by half or whole blood.

    Marriage between first cousins, whether the relationship is by half or whole blood, is permitted in Colorado.

    Prohibited Civil Unions

    The following civil unions are prohibited in the State of Colorado:

    • A civil union where one or both partners are minors (under the age of 18).
    • A civil union entered into prior to the termination of a marriage or civil union of either of the parties, unless the earlier marriage or civil union is currently valid between the two applicant parties.
    • A civil union between an ancestor and descendant, brother and sister, uncle and niece, or aunt and nephew, whether the relationship is by half or whole blood.  

    Civil union between first cousins, whether the relationship is by half or whole blood, is permitted in Colorado.

    If either you or your intended partner cannot appear at the Clerk and Recorder's office in person to apply for your civil union license, the absent party must complete an absentee application, and this must be notarized.The notarized absentee application must be used within 30 days from the date it was notarized.
     
    The party appearing in person must present, on the behalf of the absent intended partner:

    • the completed and notarized absentee application, and
    • a clear and legible photocopy of a valid form of identification of the absent intended spouse (fax copies not acceptable). 
       

    The absentee applicant's legal name as stated in the notarized absentee application must match exactly the absentee applicant's name as shown by the ID photocopy.

    The absentee application may be found on the forms page.

    PROXY MARRIAGE requires an absentee affidavit and a Proxy Power of Attorney. Found on the forms page. The spouse who can be present and the proxy must both present a valid ID when applying for the license.

    After certification of the civil union or solemnization of the marriage you must return your civil union license and completed civil union certificate to the Office of the Clerk and Recorder within 63 days after the ceremony for recording.

    Please do not separate the certificate from the license. You may use the return envelope given to you at the time of application or return the certificate in person.
     

    Recording enters your civil union license and certificate into the official county records for future reference. After recording, the original form will be returned to you by mail at the return address you supplied at the time of application.

    There is no fee for recording your license and certificate. However, if you return your civil union certificate for recording later than 63 days after certification, late fees will applyPlease see our Fees page.

    Committed Partnership Registry

    The City and County of Denver allows certain couples who are not married to recognize their commitment through the Committed Partnership Registry. 
     
    The registry is open to any two partners who:

    • are unmarried, eighteen years of age or older, and competent to enter into a contract;
    • are not prohibited from marrying each other under the laws of the State of Colorado by reason of a blood relationship or by reason of adoption;
    • are sharing a common household; and
    • do not already have different partners under the provisions of the Denver Committed Partnership Ordinance, the Colorado Civil Unions Act, or any other comparable domestic partnership provision.   

    View the Committed Partnership requirements here.
    View D.R.M.C. § 28-200, Committed Partnerships Ordinance.

    How to Register

    Both partners must appear together at the Office of the Clerk and Recorder and fill out a Certificate of Committed Partnership in duplicate. A sample of this form may be found on the Forms page

    The certificate is filled out and attested in the presence of the Clerk, who will then sign the certificate. One completed original certificate is issued to the partnership immediately and one is retained in the official records of the Clerk and Recorder. The fee for domestic partnership certification and registry is $25.00.

    Note: All certificates of committed partnerships and the Domestic Partnership Registry itself are public records. 

    What Registration Does

    Registration of your committed partnership creates a public record of your relationship. It provides evidence that your relationship has met the requirements for committed partnership defined by ordinance, which an employer or other party may or may not choose to recognize in offering domestic partnership benefits.

    What Registration Does Not Do

    Registering as committed partners does not constitute marriage under the laws of the State of Colorado nor change your legal rights with your partner. Registration does not affect your property, contract, inheritance, custody, or benefit rights nor any other legal entitlements. It does not provide for name changes. To provide for such rights domestic partners may need to execute medical and/or general powers of attorney, wills, and/or other legal instruments, just as though there were no partnership. Consult your attorney.

    A Designated Beneficiary Agreement is a contract between two people ensuring certain rights and financial protections based upon the completed document. To be legally enforceable it must be properly recorded by your county Clerk and Recorder.

    Designated Beneficiary Agreements become effective once the completed, signed and notarized form is received by the Clerk and Recorder’s office in a county where at least one of the parties resides.

    Bring your completed and notarized Designated Beneficiary Agreement to the Recording desk in the Office of the Clerk and Recorder, 201 W. Colfax Ave., Denver. The recording fee is listed on the Fees page.

    Large Print Form Available

    The Designated Beneficiary Agreement form is also available in large print on the Foms page for those who wish to use it. Users of this large print form should understand that it is a 3-page form rather than a 2-page form. The fees for recording and issuing certified copies of this 3-page form will be higher because of the extra page. Whereas the fees to record and issue certified copies of the 2-page form are $19.00, the fees to record and issue certified copies of the 3-page form are $24.50.

    Revocation

    Designated Beneficiary Agreements may also be revoked. The revocation form may be found on the Forms page. Entering into a marriage or civil union will automatically revoke a pre-existing designated beneficiary agreement of either party.

    A committed partnership is terminated by:

    • the marriage or death of either partner;
    • both partners filing with the Denver Clerk and Recorder a Certificate of Termination of Committed Partnership; or
    • either partner filing the termination certificate with the Clerk and Recorder and sending a copy thereof to the other partner by registered mail, return receipt requested.

    If you are widowed or divorced (from marriage or civil union) and wish to apply for a new marriage license, you must provide the exact date (month, day and year) and location of your spouse's/partner's death or of your divorce.

    If you are divorced you also must provide:

    • the location (city and state) of your divorce;
    • the type (district, superior, circuit, etc.) of court in which your divorce proceeding occurred; and
    • a certified copy of your divorce decree if your divorce was final within 30 days preceding the date you apply for a marriage license.
    • A copy of your divorce decree can be obtained at the Office of Vital Records.
    You must be 18 years of age or older to marry in Colorado, with the following exceptions:
    • You may marry at the age of 16 or 17 with the consent of both parents or of your legal guardian.
    • You may marry at the age of 15 or under with the consent of both parents or of your legal guardian, and with judicial approval. 
    You must present the necessary consent form (see our Forms page) and court order, as applicable, at the time that you apply for a marriage license. If you are under the age of 18 and one of your parents or your guardian has sole legal custody, you also must present proof of that sole custody.
     
    Please also be prepared to supply the place of birth (city and state) of each of your parents.
     
    Blood tests are not required and there is no waiting period. Applicants need not be Colorado residents. The marriage license is valid for 35 days.

    Your marriage license may be used immediately upon issuance. It is valid for only 35 days after issuance. It may be used anywhere within the State of Colorado.

    If the license is not used, it must be returned to the Clerk and Recorder for cancellation.

    Colorado recognizes common law marriage as legal and binding. However, cohabitation alone does not constitute common law marriage. For more information on common law marriage, please see:

     A common law marriage cannot be terminated except by court dissolution (divorce) or death.

    Online Marriage & Civil Union Applications

    Our new Online Service allows you to apply for a Marriage or Civil Union License. Visit the link below to begin the process today.

    Marriage & Civil Union Stats Available

    We are now posting our monthly marriage license stats and civil union license stats online. Marriages in Denver are up this year!
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