Marriage License Information

Marriage License Department of the Circuit Court for Howard County

9250 Judicial Way
Suite 1900
Ellicott City, MD 21043
Phone: 410-313-5850

How do I get a marriage license?

Maryland requires that a marriage license be obtained from the Circuit Court Clerk's Office in the county where the marriage is to take place.

If I was married in a foreign country, do I need to apply for another marriage license?

No. If you were married in a foreign country, your marriage is recognized by the State of Maryland.

Marriage Licenses

Couple must apply in the county where the ceremony will be held.

Applications for marriage licenses are not accepted after 4:00 p.m. The application process takes about 15 minutes.

If you are not a resident of Howard County, AND it is not convenient for you to visit the Clerk's Office, you may apply for a marriage license using a Non-Resident Marriage License Application-Affidavit. If applying by mail, only money orders are accepted. The Non-Resident Marriage License Application-Affidavit is available in fillable PDF (right-click on the link to save the form to your PC). If you come to the Clerk's Office, then the marriage application must be completed on-site at the Clerk's Office.

Waiting Period: After application, the license, which is not effective until 6:00 a.m. on the second calendar day, will be issued. (i.e. 48 hour waiting period) The license must be used within 6 months (you must marry within 6 months or the license will be void).

It is recommended that you contact the Circuit Court Clerk's Office in the county you plan to marry as each county has different fees. The requirements for Howard County are as follows:

  • Only one of the parties needs to appear to apply for the marriage license, however, you must bring ID for BOTH parties and have all of the information listed below.
  • The fee is $50.00-CASH or credit card (Visa, Mastercard or Discover) payable when the application is processed.
  • Neither a blood test nor witnesses are required in Maryland.

Guidelines for Applicants Under the Age of 18

  • Minors under the age of 17 are no longer permitted to get married.
  • An individual 17-year-olds may not marry unless:
    • the individual has the consent of each living parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the minor person either in person or through an affidavit signed under the seal of a notary public; OR
    • if the individual does not have the required consent, a certificate from a licensed physician, licensed physician assistant, or certified nurse practitioner that states the woman to be married has been examined by the physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner and is found to be pregnant or has given birth to a child; AND
    • the individual presents a certified copy of an order granting authorization to marry in accordance with the provisions of Title 5, Subtitle 2A of the Family Law Article not earlier than 15 days after the order was issued. To obtain an order granting authorization to marry, a minor who is 17 years old may file a petition in the Circuit Court in the county in which the minor resides, and an evidentiary hearing on the petition must be held to determine if an order of authorization to marry may be granted.
      Read the Law: Md. Code, Family Law §5-2A-01, 5-2A-02, 5-2A-03, 5-2A-04

The Following Information is to be Provided for Both Parties

  • Full Names
  • Ages
  • State/Country of Birth
  • Address
  • Social Security Numbers (mandatory). This information is required by State Law and will not be displayed on the marriage license.

If Previously Married


The day, month and year of the divorce, and the county and state in which the divorce was granted.


The day, month and year of the death, and the county and state in which the death occurred.

The application must be signed by the applicant(s) under oath indicating the truthfulness of the information under penalty of perjury.

Civil Ceremonies

Civil Ceremonies are performed at the Circuit Court for Howard County. The address is:

9250 Judicial Way
Suite 1900
Ellicott City, MD 21043


Ceremonies are held Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.

The cost is $25.00 CASH or credit card (Visa, Mastercard or Discover) payable the day of the ceremony. To use a credit card you must present identification that matches the name on your credit card.

Certified Copies

Certified copies must be obtained from the Marriage License department located at:

9250 Judicial Way
Suite 1900
Ellicott City, MD 21043

You may request a certified copy by mail. Please include in your request:

  • Names
  • Date of Marriage
  • License Number (if known)
  • Check or Money Order

The cost for each certified copy is $5.50. The check or money order should be made payable to the Clerk, Circuit Court for Howard County. For your convenience, you may complete the Application for Certified Copy of Marriage License.

For further information on obtaining a marriage license or civil ceremonies, please call 410-313-5850.