Most people think of marriage as a romantic arrangement, but in actuality it is a legally binding contract. As with any other contract, certain requirements must be met in order for a marriage in Oklahoma to be valid. Whether you are getting married in a church, at the city hall or in a ballroom, the same basic rules must be followed. This article explains the legal requirements for marriage in Oklahoma.
Who Can Get Married
In order for a marriage in Oklahoma to be legal, a person must be unmarried and at least 18 years of age. If the person is under 18 years of age, he or she can only get married with written consent from his or her parent or guardian. The law forbids any person under the age of 16 from getting married except when authorized by the court.
The Marriage License
Under Oklahoma law provides that no one can get married or perform a marriage ceremony without first obtaining a marriage license from a judge or clerk of an Oklahoma district court to authorize the marriage between the persons named in the license. However, Oklahoma courts continue to additionally recognize common law marriage in Oklahoma.
To receive a marriage license in Oklahoma, you will need to do the following:
- Pay a fee.
- Prove that you are 18 years of age or be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
- Present a valid Driver’s License or a Certified Birth Certificate.
Once issued, the license is authorized for 10 days only and it must be returned to the Court Clerk within 5 days of the wedding ceremony for recording. Furthermore, the person who performs the ceremony must be registered with the state.
Same Sex Marriages
Gay marriage has been recognized in Oklahoma since June 26, 2015. Oklahoma statutes still provide Oklahoma does not allow same sex marriages and that a marriage between persons of the same sex performed in another state will not be recognized as valid and binding in Oklahoma. However, the United States Supreme Court on June 26, 2015, in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___ (2015), held that the right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples by the United States Constitution, which supersedes Oklahoma statutes to the contrary.
The legal requirements for marriage in Oklahoma based on statute can be summarized as follows:
- You must be unmarried.
- Be at least 18 years of age, or have consent from your parent, legal guardian or from the court.
- Have a marriage license.
Be marrying a person of the opposite sex(overruled by United States Supreme Court precedent).
Tulsa Family Law Attorney: Free Consultation
If you have further questions regarding the legal requirements for marriage in Oklahoma, contact an experienced family law attorney.
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