This video discuses the importance of obtaining your marriage license and documentation before your wedding ceremony. It also provides some solutions if you were to forget this important step.

Hi everybody, I wanted to bring up an important topic having to do with marriage licenses and the legal part of your ceremony. This is particularly important for a little White Chapel. 

When you arrive to the Little White Chapel for your ceremony, you do have to have your marriage license, and you do have to have all of the papers that you received in the envelope when you obtained your marriage license. Otherwise, they will not perform your ceremony and they will not do a pretend ceremony. It has to be a legal ceremony, and you have to have all those papers for you to do it. The only exception is a vow renewal. And in that case, they will have you sign documentation saying when and where your original wedding ceremony took place, and they will do a renewal. But that is the only exception. 

So if you arrive at your scheduled time to the Little White Chapel and you do not have this, then unfortunately, you will have to go to the marriage bureau. Or if you forgot your license at your hotel room, you will have to go get that to have a legal ceremony. All of our vendors, including our photographers, are only booked with you for the specific time that we have agreed upon. So if you don’t bring your paperwork, your photographer is not guaranteed to be available for the ceremony. So what you can do (if you forget your paperwork) is you can just do photos with your photographer for the time that you have. And then you can go back later to do your legal ceremony. If you have the photographer for a few hours, and you think that you’ll have time, then you guys can work that out. But they do not have to stay longer. They do not have to stay past the time that we agreed upon. So it really is up to you to make sure that you bring all the stuff with you that you need to bring. We can make some modifications and do photos, but you just might not be able to get your ceremony photographed if you forget to bring this paperwork. We’ve had a few situations where this happened. There were some people who thought that the souvenir document that they give you didn’t have to be brought. I know the name is a little misleading, but you actually do have to bring every single paper that they give you otherwise they cannot perform the ceremony. 

Also, some of the other places, or if you have an officiant that is coming out to the desert or a different location. Sometimes they will do a fake ceremony for you, just because everybody’s there and you’re not going to have time to go back and get it. But you will be required to pay an extra fee, or meet up with them at a later time to do the actual legal part of the ceremony because they need all that paperwork to process it. This is on a case by case basis and that has to be worked out with the officiant that does the ceremony. The Little White Chapel does not offer this. So if you do not bring your paperwork, you cannot have any type of ceremony there until you do. They do have you check in 30 minutes prior to when your ceremony is scheduled. So if you arrive 30 minutes prior and you realize, “Hey, I don’t have my marriage license documentation.” It is pretty close to the marriage bureau. So what you could do is (if you’re meeting your photographer at the ceremony start time) you can let them know that you’re running to go get your marriage license and that you may be late. And then you guys can just go from there. If you arrive at least 30 minutes prior (and it’s not like a weekend or a busy week in town) you may be able to get your license and get back to the chapel at the time that your ceremony is supposed to start, or very close to it. But if you’re late, then they’re going to put you on a waitlist so your ceremony might not start as close to the time. But they can give you options when you go check in. So just make sure you let everybody know what’s going on and when. We try to do whatever we can to get you as many photos and get it to happen, but just keep all this in mind. It’s very important and thank you!

Marriage License Requirements

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