Request a Wake County Marriage Certificate in Minutes
If you get , your marriage license and certificate are issued from the Clerk of Court's office in downtown Raleigh. Even if you're living somewhere else when you tie the knot, your legal documents are recorded in the county where you married.
Keep reading to learn how you can get a copy of your marriage certificate, and how DoNotPay makes the process simple and easy.
The Difference Between a Marriage License and Marriage Certificate
Many people think that a license to marry and a certificate of marriage are the same thing. Not so. You apply for a license with the County, listing the parties that wish to marry, but leaving details like the date and officiant blank. The license is valid for 60 days from the date it's issued.
Once you are married, you may recall that the first thing you did as a married couple was to sign the license, along with the officiant and two witnesses—typically the maid of honor and best man (they actually do have a real job to do!). The officiant fills in the date and location, and then sends the document to the courthouse for recording.
The certificate is an abstract of the license—a document that verifies your marriage on a certain date and at a certain place.
Why You Need a Certificate of Marriage
Marriage is more than setting up a house and having a joint checking account. It usually means setting up that joint account, getting a new Social Security card if a spouse is changing their name, changing beneficiaries on insurance policies, adding a spouse to a health plan, and so many more tasks you hardly think of until you're faced with a mountain of paperwork, all demanding proof of your marriage. And because many of these tasks are legal, you must provide proof of your new status, with a certified (this means a copy with a seal from the courthouse) marriage certificate.
How to Get a Wake County Marriage Certificate
If you need a , there are several ways to get one. Genealogists searching for information on marriages can find certificates dating back to 1932.
North Carolina uses third-party processor Vitalchek (vitalcheck.com) for online certificate requests. You'll be asked to provide proof of identity, and a street address for delivery of the certificate. They will not deliver to PO, APO, or FBO boxes. You'll also need to provide a credit or debit card for processing.
The fee is $36.70 for regular mail delivery. You may also opt for overnight delivery via UPS at an additional charge, but with a 4-month processing time, that hardly seems prudent.
2. In Person
If you need your copy immediately, the best course of action is to go in person, Monday-Friday between 9:00 and 4:30.
|Wake County Register of Deeds Contact Information|
|Address||300 S Salisbury St
Raleigh, NC 27601
3. By Mail
You can also apply by mail. The best way is to go online to Wake.gov and follow the prompts for vital records and download the PDF in either English or Spanish. Complete the printed form, sign it, enclose the required documentation and a copy of your driver's license or passport, along with a check or money order for $10, to the above address.
Here are a few pointers if you choose to apply by mail:
- The county will communicate with you via email
- Orders are processed 1 or 2 business days after the complete application is received
- Allow the post office a couple of weeks to deliver the certificates
Who Can Request a Marriage Certificate in Wake County?
Only the parties involved in the marriage or immediate family members can apply for a marriage certificate, and applicants must provide a reason. Here are the acceptable reasons and applicants for requesting a certificate:
- The applicant him- or herself, sibling, child, parent or stepparent, grandparent, or grandchild, or has genealogical credentials
- The applicant needs the certificate for legal determinations of property rights
- The applicant is a legally authorized representative of one of the persons who may legally apply
Remember that in North Carolina, it is a felony to fraudulently request a marriage certificate.
DoNotPay Cuts the Red Tape
DoNotPay is an AI legal resource that can do the paperwork for you. And really, who wants to bother with going downtown, hunting for a parking spot (and paying for it), and doing all this on the county schedule? You can upload your documents and information to DoNotPay and with the click of your mouse, the forms are filled out correctly the first time—and your marriage certificate is on the way.
Here’s how to request your Wake County marriage certificate:
- Go to the Certificates of Marriage product on DoNotPay.
- Select whether the certificate belongs to you or a relative/loved one. If it belongs to someone else, enter the details of both people on the certificate and select/upload evidence that proves your relationship with them. If the certificate is yours, enter the details of your spouse.
- Enter the city, state, and county where the marriage certificate was issued as well as the date it was issued.
- Indicate what you will be using this certificate for, and choose whether you need an authorized or certified copy.
- Enter your contact information and shipping address. Upload copies of your government-issued identification, such as a driver's license.
- Choose whether you would like to electronically sign this form or not. Once we generate the form, verify that all of the information is correct.
- Next, you can notarize your document by scheduling a notarization appointment using our Notary product. Otherwise, proceed to our Mail Checks product and let DoNotPay mail in your request form with a check on your behalf.
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