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Marriage Certificate Iowa

Marriage Certificate Iowa


Requirements for Marriage Certificates in Iowa 


Marriage Certificates in Iowa


In order to validate a marriage certificate in Iowa, two prospective spouses must follow a number of steps and make sure the marriage is valid under law.  This article will discuss steps two people should take to finalize their marriage certificate in Iowa after obtaining a marriage license, but qualifying factors to legally marry and obtain a marriage certificate in IA need explained beforehand.  


Requirements for Marriage Certificates in Iowa


In order receive marriage certificates in Iowa, prospective spouses cannot fall under any of the categories listed below: 


1. the marriage is otherwise prohibited by law

2. either party was impotent at the time of marriage 

3. either party has a husband or wife living at the time of marriage (bigamy) 

4. either party was a ward under guardianship and did not have capacity to contract a legal marriage

5. between a man and his sister, daughter, aunt, son’s daughter, daughter’s daughter, brother’s daughter, or sister’s daughter 

6. between a woman and her brother, son, uncle, son’s son, daughter’s son, brother’s son, or sister’s son

7. between first cousins

8. either spouse was 16 or 17 years old without proper consent from a parent


Two future spouses must obtain a marriage license before they have a legal officiator return the marriage certificate in Iowa to a county registrar.  For more information on marriage licenses before receiving your marriage certificate in IA, refer to the article on this website titled, “How to Obtain Copies of Marriages Licenses in Iowa.”  Marriage certificates in Iowa can only be filed after couples have received marriage licenses and acted accordingly to IA Code 595.2 through 595.7


Step 2 Solemnization Requirements for Marriage Certificates in Iowa


If couples have qualified for marriage certificates in Iowa, they will receive a copy of the marriage license along with a blank return for the person who has solemnized the marriage.  In order for a couple to legally receive a marriage certificate in Iowa, the marriage must be solemnized according to Code 595.10 Who may solemnize. 


The code provides that only the following qualified individuals can solemnize a marriage and validate a marriage certificate in Iowa: 


1. “A judge of the supreme court, court of appeal, or district, including a district associate judge, associate juvenile judge, or a judicial magistrate, and including a senior judge as defined in section 602.9202, subsection 3.”


2. “A person ordained or designated as a leader of the person’s religious faith.”


Section 595.11 states marriage can be solemnized in other types of ways (with consent of the parties), but parties that receive a marriage certificate in Iowa through another method will have to pay $50 each to the treasurer of the state.  There may be other fees associated with the marriage certificate in IA as well.


Step 3 The Return of Marriage Certificates in Iowa


Code 595.12 states the following about a marriage certificate in IA, and applies to marriages that were officiated by someone other than a minister and magistrate: 


“After the marriage has been solemnized, the officiating minister or magistrate shall attest to the marriage on the blank provided for that purpose and return the certificate of marriage within fifteen days to the county registrar who issued the marriage license.” 


If the marriage certificate in IA is not returned in the proper amount of time, the officiating officer can face fines and penalties.  After the marriage certificate in IA is legally returned, the registrar is the full custodian of such records.