Minneapolis wedding officiant Rev Coleman, for a chapel with a Minnesota wedding

Minnesota Marriage License
How to get one

Short answer:

  1. Apply for your Minnesota marriage license at any county clerk's office (addresses are below)
  2. The county then mails you the license
  3. You bring the license to your wedding to be signed by the officiant

Wedding ceremony signing at the St Paul College Club

Long answer:

You can apply for a Minnesota marriage license at any county Registrar in Minnesota (contact info is below) and then use it in any county in Minnesota
          o The two of you go together to the County Registrar (contact info is below)
          o Both of you show your driver's licenses
          o Fill out the form
          o Pay the fee, usually $100
          o Then the county will mail you the license after the 5-day "waiting period".

Special cases. Usually, all you need is your ID (usually your driver's license), but there are special cases.
          o The most common requirement is the one applying to divorcees. If you've been divorced, you'll need a copy of a divorce decree and be ready to list the date, county and state of the divorce
          o If you are a widow or widower, you need the date of the death of your spouse, but no paperwork is needed
          o If either applicant is under 18 you may need a parent to come with you
          o If one of the applicants has a criminal felony conviction, the waiting period is 30 days, instead of the usual 5-day waiting period

    * Once you get your marriage license, bring it to your wedding on your wedding day to be signed by the officiant and two witnesses 

The groom signing the MN marriage license

After I apply, how long will it take to get my Minnesota marriage license?
          o You will receive your MN marriage license:
                - Plus 5 days after you apply (the "waiting period")
                - Plus time for the check to clear
                - Plus the time in the mail
                   The exception is Hennepin County. Instead of mailing you your MN marriage license, Hennepin County gives the license to you immediately, but it's not valid until after 5 days (the "waiting period")
          o Once you receive the Minnesota marriage license, you may have your wedding immediately. Just make sure to bring your license to the wedding ceremony.

            If you can't wait the 5 days, you may be able to arrange a hearing with a judge who can grant a waiver, and then receive the license the same day. Call the Clerk of Court for hearing times.
    * Note that you don't have to be a Minnesota resident to get a Minnesota marriage license

Is a blood test required to get your Minnesota marriage license?

    * No, a blood test is not required in the state of Minnesota. Years ago, people were so worried about hereditary blood diseases that the state instituted blood tests to screen out potential problems. The practices is now obsolete, and Minnesota, being a progressive state, has done away with the requirement.

Hennepin County marriage license

Each county has special rules for obtaining your marriage license.
In Hennepin County, the special rules are:
  • Both parties must apply for the license together
  • Hennepin County prints out and gives you the license immediately instead of mailing it to you (the 5-day waiting period still applies, though)
  • Hennepin County Service Centers tend to be very busy, so to ensure service, I recommend that you arrive at least one hour before closing

Here are the Hennepin County centers for obtaining a Minnesota marriage license.  They all have the same phone number, which is 612-348-8240:
  1. Hennepin County Government Center
    (Downtown Minneapolis)
    300 South 6th Street, 1st floor,
    (612) 348-8240
    Open Monday - Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  2. Brookdale Service Center - Brooklyn Center (Northern suburb)
    6125 Shingle Creek Parkway, Brooklyn Center
    Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  3. Ridgedale Service Center - Minnetonka (Western suburb)
    12601 Ridgedale Drive, Minnetonka
    Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  4. Southdale Service Center - Edina (Southern suburb)
    7009 York Avenue South, Edina
    Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m
  5. Maple Grove Service Center (Northwest suburb)
    13720 Grove Drive, Maple Grove
    Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  6. Eden Prairie Service Center (Southwest suburb)
    479 Prairie Center Drive. Eden Prairie
    Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Notes on obtaining a MN marriage license in Ramsey County:
  • You need the place of birth and the Social Security number for both the Bride and Groom
  • You have to fill out an application that has a carbon copy, so it has to be filled out at their office and can't be filled out ahead of time.
  1. 555 Cedar Street, downtown St Paul.
    This office is the only one in Ramsey County where you can apply for a marriage license.
    Open Monday - Friday (8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.)
    Closed on Saturday, Sunday and Holidays
The building for St Paul marriage licenses
 Here's the St Paul, MN building (555 Cedar Street) where you can apply for your marriage license,
as seen from the 10th Street entrance.

Dakota County Marriage Licenses

There are three sites for obtaining a Minnesota marriage license in Dakota County:
  1. Hastings Administration Center
    1590 West Highway 55, Hastings
    Open 7:45am - 4:45pm, Monday - Friday
  2. Apple Valley Service Center
    14955 Galaxie Avenue, Apple Valley
    Open 8:00 to 4:30, Monday and Friday, 8:00 to 6:00, Tuesday through Thursday
  3. West St Paul Service Center
    1 Mendota Road West, West St Paul
    (651) 554-6600
    Open 8:00am - 4:30pm weekdays, and till 6:00 pm Tuesdays

Anoka County Marriage Licenses

  • If you have Acrobat Reader installed on your computer, you can even fill out the Anoka County marriage license application form ahead of time.
  • While you can fill out the application ahead of time with the above link, but do not actually sign the form until asked to do when you are at the license center.
Sites for obtaining a MN marriage license in Anoka County:
  1. Government Center of Anoka County Vital Statistics
    325 East Main Street, 120, Anoka
    Open 8:00 - 4:30. Monday - Friday
  2. Anoka License Center
    7550 Sunwood Drive NW, Suite A, Ramsey
    Open Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:00 (except Tuesdays, open till 7:00 pm)
  3. Blaine License Center
    10995 Club West Parkway, Suite 700, Blaine
    Open Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:00 (except Tuesdays, open till 7:00 pm)
  4. Columbia Heights License Center
    3982 Central Ave NE, Columbia Heights
    OOpen Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:00 (except Tuesdays, open till 7:00 pm)
  5. Coon Rapids License Center
    455 99th Ave NW, Suite 100, Coon Rapids
    Open Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:00 (except Tuesdays, open till 7:00 pm)
  6. Ham Lake License Center
    17565 Central Ave NE - #330, Ham Lake
    Open Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:00 (except Tuesdays, open till 7:00 pm)

Goodhue County Marriage Licenses:

  • While only one person needs to be present to apply for your Minnesota marriage license, for each person, you must also know:
    •  - Date and place of birth for the Bride and Groom
    •  - Social security numbers (if you have one)
  •  - You may have your MN marriage license mailed to you, or you may pick it up in person.

    • If you apply on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, you can pick up the license thefollowing Monday.
    • If you apply on Thursday, you can pick it up the license the following Tuesday.

    • If you apply on Friday, you pick up the license the following Wednesday.

There is only one location in Goodhue County for obtaining your marriage license:
  1. Goodhue County Government Center
    509 W. 5th Street, Red Wing
    Open Monday - Friday 8:00. - 4:30

Scott County Marriage Licenses

  1. Scott County Government Services Building
    First floor
    200 4th Avenue W, Shakopee
    Open 8:00 to 4:30 Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and then Mondays and Thursdays till 6:00

Carver County Marriage Licenses

  • While only one person needs to be present to apply for the marriage license, for each person, you must also know the following for the Bride and Groom:
    •   - Date of birth
    •   - State of birth
    •   - Social security numbers (if you have one)

There is only one site for obtaining a MN marriage license in Carver County:

  1. Auditors Office of Carver County
    600 East 4th Street, Chaska
    Open Monday - Friday, 8:00 - 4:00

After your wedding ceremony

  1. Your officiant will send the license to the county
  2. The county will then stamp and certify the marriage license and then mail it back to you
  3. Then, you may use that stamped and certified copy in order to
    change your documents to your new name

Marriage license question:

Hello, Rev. Coleman. I have been on the internet trying to figure out what I need to do for my fiance and I to be married in June 2007. I know your website says that you are in Minneapolis, MN. We are currently living in Colorado Springs, CO but plan on marrying in Red Wing, MN (lots and lots of family). Your website says that at least one of us needs to be present to obtain or our MN marriage license. That would be fine, but there is a 5-day waiting period before you are issued the wedding license. We only plan on taking a week off for the wedding and that does include travel time. Is there a way that I could do it through the mail or something?

Any help that you could provide for me would really be appreciated.


Yes, while I wouldn't be able to travel down to Red Wing on a Saturday in wedding season (May-October), I love answering questions. Each MN county is different, but generally, if you make an appointment to see a judge, a judge can waive the 5-day waiting period and then you can get your Minnesota marriage license immediately. My recommendation is to make a few phone calls and set up that arrangement. It's a bit of a pain in the neck going to the judge and going through that process, but I have worked with couples in your situation and they have done exactly that with no problem at all. Good luck! If you have any other questions, I'm always here for you.

11/8/11: Update: Retired Judge Thomas Armstrong just told me a story of a local judge who refused to give a marriage license waiver because the circumstances were not an emergency. He said that this story is unusual and that waivers are usually granted, but it does occasionally happen that the waiver isn't granted.

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