About This Online Publication
This online publication is designed as a
service to the public in order to provide a general understanding
of the duties and procedures of the Probate Court in referenced
to Marriage License. This should not be considered as a legal
reference. If you have a legal question dealing with Marriage
License, an attorney should be consulted.
Marriage is a solemn and exalted state, sanctified
by the church, respected by society, and licensed by the State.
Marriage is basically a contract between two parties: the
prospective husband and the prospective wife. However, there
is a third party to all contracts of marriage - the State.
It is the State that, by law, provides conditions to and limitations
of the marriage contract.
The Probate Court is the sole agency, under
the laws of the State of Ohio, that is vested with the authority
to issue marriage licenses.
The fee for obtaining a marriage license
is fifty dollars ($50.00), payable in cash or in-state check.
Seventeen dollars ($17.00) of this fee is deposited with a
fund established by the State of Ohio for aid to abused and
Out-of-state personal checks, credit
and/or debit cards are NOT accepted.
Who May Apply?
Males at eighteen (18) years of age and females
at sixteen (16) years who are no closer of kin than second
cousins may apply
for a marriage license. Application must be made in person
by both parties. Applicants must have a valid driver's licenses
or other Government issued identification.
Each applicant must supply to the Court their
Social Security number, their current address, their current
age, their birth date, place of birth, the name of their father
and the maiden name of their mother. Social Security numbers
are kept confidential. If the name of any parent as requested
on the application is unknown a birth certificate must be
provided to the Court.
No license will be issued if either applicant
is under the influence of any intoxicating liquor or controlled
substance, or is infected with syphilis in a form that is
communicable or likely to become communicable.
One or both of the applicants must be a resident
of Summit County for a marriage license to be issued. Applicants
from out of state may apply for a marriage license in Summit
County, provided the marriage ceremony is performed in Summit
When a marriage application is presented
to the Court and applicants show Summit County addresses on
the application but their identification show residency in
another county, the Court requires proof of Summit County
residency, i.e., Utility Bills, Cable Bill, Rental/Lease Agreement,
Bank Statements, etc.
All applicants under the age of eighteen
(18) must have a letter from their minister or a marriage
counselor stating that they have received marriage counseling.
If the male applicant is under eighteen (18) years
or the female applicant is under sixteen (16) years,
they must have the consent of the Juvenile Court. If the female
applicant is sixteen (16) or seventeen (17), she must
have the consent of both parents, or surviving parent, or
the parent who has custody, or her legal guardian, or any
other person having custody under R.C. 3101.01.
If one or both of the parties have been divorced,
a CERTIFIED copy of the divorce decree must
be submitted to the Probate Court at the time of application.
No longer required.
Who May Perform Marriage Ceremony
An ordained or licensed minister of any religious
society or congregation within this state licensed to perform
marriages, a judge of a county court in his county, an authorized
judge of a municipal court, the mayor of a municipal corporation
in any county in which such municipal corporation wholly or
partly lies, the superintendent of the state school for the
deaf, or any religious society, in conformity with the rules
and regulations of its church. Civil marriage ceremonies may
be made by scheduling with the Akron Municipal Court by calling
Once the license is issued, it is only valid
for a sixty (60) day calendar period. If the marriage license
has expired, reapplication and a new license must be issued.
Change of Name
Traditionally, the bride takes the last name
of her husband, although it is not necessary or mandatory
that she do so. However, if she does, it is the newlywed's
responsibility to see that the appropriate agencies are notified.
This includes among others, businesses and stores with whom
she has credit accounts, banks where she has checking and
savings accounts, the Social Security Administration, and
the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to see that her driver's license
All applicants must check their license prior
to leaving the Court in order to make sure that all of the
information is correct and that no errors have been made.
Ministers may obtain information about licensing
requirements by contacting:
State of Ohio
Office of The Secretary of State
30 E. Broad St., 14th Floor
Columbus, OH 43266-0418
Information on changing your name with Social
Security may be obtained by contacting:
Social Security Administration
2nd Floor Federal Building
2 South Main Street
Akron, OH 44308
Legal Practice in the Probate Court
Legal practice in the Probate Court is restricted
by law to attorneys who are licensed by the Supreme Court
of Ohio. If an individual wishes to handle his or her own
case, he or she may do so; however, they may not represent
others. Due to the complexity of the law and the desire to
avoid costly errors, most individuals who have filings before
the Court are represented by an attorney. Deputy clerks are
prevented by law from practicing law and therefore are limited
in the advice they are permitted to give.