All people who marry in Massachusetts must have a marriage license issued in Massachusetts. An out-of-state license cannot be used.
All state law information about marriage licenses can be found on mass.gov’s website; click here.
How do we apply for a marriage license?
You must both apply together, in person, for a marriage license. This applies to both residents and non-residents of the Commonwealth alike. According to Massachusetts law, you must jointly file intentions to marry and you may do so with the City or Town Clerk in any community in the state. If a person is in the military, intentions may be filed by either party, providing one is a Massachusetts resident. A marriage license is valid for 60 days from the time the intentions are filed and may be used in any city or town in the state. It is not valid outside of Massachusetts. Please contact the Clerk’s Office at 978-468-5570, extension 3 for more information.
Is there a waiting period from the date of application to the date the license is issued?
Yes, in Massachusetts, there is a mandatory three-day waiting period.
May we marry before the three days for good reason?
Yes, you may do so by obtaining a court waiver after filing intentions. This can be done at the Ipswich District Court located in Newburyport.
What is the cost of a marriage license?
The Marriage License fee in Hamilton is $25.00 and can be paid by check or cash; sorry, the Town does not accept credit cards.
How old must we be to get married?
Massachusetts residents must be age 18 to marry. If either party is under 18, a court order from a probate or district court must be obtained before intentions can be filed.
Do we need to have blood tests?
No; the state’s previous requirement was repealed back in January 2005.
What if one or both of us has been divorced?
You are not required to present a divorce certificate when filing intentions to marry.
Do we need any witnesses present at the ceremony?
No, Massachusetts law does not require any witness to be present at the ceremony.
What should we do if an out-of-state member of the clergy is performing the marriage?
The clergy person must obtain a Certificate of Authorization from the Secretary of States office prior to the ceremony. For further information contact:
Division of Public Records
Secretary of the Commonwealth
One Ashburton Place, Room 1719
Boston, MA 02108
Who should I call if I have more questions?
You may call the Town Clerk’s Office at 978-468-5570, extension 3 or the State Registry of Vital Records at 617-753-8600.