Georgia Marriage Records
Georgia Marriage license applications are NOT open to the public until 75 years after the event . Under Georgia law, Marriage records are only available to the bride and groom shown on the marriage license during this closed period.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Frequently Asked Questions about Georgia Marriage Records:
Q: When did Georgia start recording marriages?
A: The recording of marriages in the state of Georgia became a legal requirement in 1805, although the Office of Vital Records only holds birth and death records from 1919 to the present, marriage records from between 1952 and 1996 and divorce records from 1952 to the present. Older records may be available through the counties, generally through the probate system. For earlier records, the Georgia State Archives holds many records on Microfilm and some counties actually started collecting marriage records well before the 1805 requirement.
Q: How do I verify a Georgian marriage record?
A: For marriages post 1900 Certificate copies are issued by request through either the Georgia State Office of Vital Statistics (between 1952 and 1996) or through the probate office in the county where the marriage order was carried out. For marriage that occurred pre 1900’s, either visit the Georgia State Archives or send in a mail in request: If you are sending a mail in request, the fee is $10.00 with additional charges for limited copies. Turn around on requests take 3 to 4 weeks on average.
Q: Are there restrictions on getting copies of Georgia vital records?
A: There are restrictions on public access to Georgia vital records. Under Georgia law, all Vital Statistics Records are strictly confidential until they become public.
- Birth records become public records 100 years after the event.
- Death records become public records 75 years after the event.
- Marriage records become public records 75 years after the event.
- Divorce records become public records 75 years after the event.
Q: How is Georgia different than other states?
A: Georgia has the most revised and accepted versions of the state constitution of any other state and the second most counties besides Texas. Most of these counties are managed by a committee of commissioners, although a few are run by a single elected person. The 536 municipalities in Georgia are legally considered cities regardless of population. There is no classification smaller than city, such as village or town or borough.
Getting Married in Georgia
- You must have a license to be married in Georgia. A marriage license is issued by the state for the purpose of registering your marriage with the state to ensure that all the rights and responsibilities that accompany such a union are given, and also to ensure that the parties getting married are allowed to do so under the current Georgia marriage laws; to ensure that the parties are not related in any way (except cousins), are both consenting and are both of age, and that neither party has an existing undissolved previous marriage.
- Cost for a license varies by county and also depending on whether the appropriate steps have been taken to get the application fee waived. The $35 application fee will be waived once the certificate for completing a qualified premarital education program is presented to the marriage license issuing office.
- There is no waiting period between applying for a marriage license and getting it.
- No blood test is required.
- Both bride and groom must be at least 18 years old, unless with the permission of both parents except in the case where the parents have no legal rights. In these instances the youngest age is 16.
- Georgia has no common law marriage.
- Georgia does not allow same sex marriages.
- Marriage license application forms must be obtained from the county probate court. If one or both parties are a resident of Georgia, any county will be able to provide the licensure application. If neither party is a resident of Georgia, then the application must be obtained in the county that the service will take place. Georgia Probate Court finder.
The Bureau of Vital Statistics is located:
2600 Skyland Drive NE Atlanta, GA 30319-3640
Call Center: (404) 679-4702
To Obtain a Georgia Marriage Certificate:
Georgia Dept of Human Resources
2600 Skyland Drive NE
Atlanta, GA 30319-3640
This office holds marriage records from 1952. Georgia marriage records at the county level are held by the Probate Judge of the county. Divorce records are held by the Clerk of Superior Court where the divorce was finalized.
Info: (404) 679-4701
Fax: (404) 524-4278
About Georgia Marriage Records:
The early Georgia marriage record index starts 34 years before Georgia's statehood (Jan. 2, 1788). It is intended to be a guide to finding Georgia marriage records for your ancestors. All marriage records should be verified for accuracy. The cost and process associated with obtaining Georgia marriage certificates varies by county. Addresses and phone numbers are provided on the county pages for information on the exact process for obtaining copies of Georgia marriage records.
- Georgia Marriage Record Index, 1754-1800
A Ba-Be Bi-Bo Br-By Ca-Coc Col-Cur D E F Ga-Go Gr-Gu Ha-He
- Birth, Death, and Marriage Records in Georgia Family Bibles
- Ex-Slave Marriages to 1876
- Marriages and Deaths, 1875
- $ indicates a subscription database, but all offer a free trial for free access.
- Georgia Marriages 1699-1944 $
- Georgia Marriages to 1850 $
- Georgia Marriages, 1851-1900 $
- Houston, Muscogee, and Talbot County Marriages, 1826-52 $
- Midway Congregation Church Records, Liberty County $
Georgia Statewide Genealogy Resources
- 1860 Gordon Co, GA Census
- Estate Record of John Lay
- Georgia Census Records
Georgia census records, census indexes and census transcriptions available online.
- Georgia Genealogy Search
Search for ancestors in free Georgia genealogy search engines.
- Georgia Genealogy Forum
- Georgia GenWeb
- Georgia Public Records
Georgia public records information and searches.
- Georgia Resources at RootsWeb
- Georgia Tombstone Project
- Georgia Vital Records
- Gordon Co, GA Civil War Soldiers
- Surname Divorces
- Surname Search - GenForum Message Boards
Free Trial Resources at Ancestry.com:
- All Georgia Databases
- Georgia Deaths 1919-98
- Georgia Census, 1790-1890
- Georgia Cherokee Land Lottery, 1832
- Georgia Land Lottery, 1827
- Georgia Tax Index, 1789-99
Tips to Find Georgia Marriage Records Faster
When you're looking at your family history online, there are a number of records and pieces of information that you're likely to find. Most of the records you'll find are things like birth certificates and death certificates, and these, along with census records, can help you to access a great deal of information about your family.
There are times when you may find that you can't find the records that you're looking for, and in these situations, you'll need a bit of help, or you'll need to look for marriage records. Marriage records are a great way to find information about your family, as they can tell you not only about the couple who was married, but also about their families. This information will give you all sorts of vital clues that can lead you on the path to completing your entire family tree. Here are a few tips to make finding information, like Georgia marriage records, easier.
Names - Having names is extremely helpful, especially if they're full names. Without full names, you may find that it takes considerably more time to find the kind of information that you want to find. Think about it: while there are a large number of John Smith's, for instance, how many John Elmore Smith's are there? Likely, not very many. That's a prime example of how full names assist in the location of genealogical information as you search Georgia marriage records.
Dates - One of the trickiest parts about finding information about your family members online is dates. Dates can get very confusing, especially if you have family members with similar names or if you have family members who have divorced and remarried. Keep a written log of dates for each person that you're researching to make things easier for you. A calculator can be a huge help as well; keep one nearby.
Location - You may think that simply looking up Georgia marriage records will net you the information you want, but you're wrong. Georgia is a large state, and if you don't narrow down the area where your family member probably got married, then you're likely to find yourself spending a great deal of time searching. To avoid spending hours of research time looking for one marriage record, it is imperative that you try to narrow down the area where your family member was married. As a tip, check the locations near where the bride was born, as brides often go home to get married.
Birth Certificates - Another great way to get access to Georgia marriage records is to look for birth certificates. Birth certificates will give you the name of the child's parents in their entirety. This means that you can easily put those names into your search engine, allowing for a much more productive outcome and a better shot of getting the marriage records that you're seeking.
Finding Georgia marriage records doesn't have to be hard. If you take your time, stay organized, and know what you're looking for, you should be able to find them easily enough.