CoVid-19 and the closure of County Clerk Recorder offices to the public has made obtaining a marriage license become a more lengthy process. The information below gives you an idea of the new realities.
START EARLY - If you are getting married within the next 30-90 days, it's imperative you log onto your County Clerk Recorder's Office website to get the latest updates on obtaining your marriage license. As of this update, July 2, 2020, most California County Clerk's offices remained closed to the public for in-person business and that means some offices are only handling requests by email, other offices aren't issuing them at all.
IMPORTANT: Know that you are NOT required to obtain your marriage license from the county in which you live. Instead make your decision based on what kind of ceremony you want--Zoom style vs an in-person ceremony. That way you'll know what County in which to apply for your license.
For instance, the San Francisco County Clerk's office is only offering Zoom style weddings and issuing marriage licenses for that sole purpose. And, that service was through June 28th, however they are working to extend their Zoom style services which require an advance appointment. See their web link for updates https://sfgov.org/countyclerk/county-clerk-services-during-covid-19-response
In you want your ceremony officiated in-person, Alameda County has been consistently issuing marriage licenses utilizing the Affidavit of Inability to Appear process. This process starts by you emailing them atCROCustomerService@acgov.org requesting a marriage license utilizing their Affidavit of Inability to Appear process. They will reply by providing the instructions and requisite forms for completion which includes a place for your officiant's info and signature too. You and your fiance's signatures will need to be notarized. Upon return of completed forms and payment via check the County will then issue your marriage license to your officiant for follow through. This 2-3 week process is the same for other counties issuing licenses via the Affidavit of Inability to Appear process. The Alameda County Clerk office's website is: https://www.acgov.org/auditor/clerk/index.htm
At the time of this printing, it seems there is NO uniformity across California County Clerk offices, so it is IMPERATIVE you work with your officiant to determine which California County Clerk-Recorder's office has a process that will work for you and your fiance from a timing perspective. Again, you do NOT have to obtain your license from the county in which you live, chose instead based on a process and type of ceremony you want, Zoom-style vs in-person.
The social distancing and mask order is an important one to reduce the spread/impact of CoVid-19. If you're thinking about or have already decided to reschedule your celebratory wedding event but want to keep your original wedding date for sentimental reasons give me a call, text or email. Together we can discuss the alternatives including the required social distancing for an elopement style ceremony! Most of all, take good care of yourself and those you love!
--Saundra I Do x Two - an experienced officiant cell/text: 510-813-2749