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A marriage license may be issued under the following conditions and procedures:
County of Issuance:
1. If one of the parties is a resident of Georgia, the license can be issued in any county.
2. If neither party is a resident of Georgia, the license must be issued in the county in which the marriage ceremony is to be performed.
1. A marriage license is issued based upon a written application made by the applicants, verified by oath of the applicants.
1. As of July 1, 2003, premarital blood tests are no longer required. The State of Georgia, however, recommends that each applicant applying for a marriage license obtain a blood test for sickle cell disease prior to obtaining a marriage license.
1. The applicants must designate on the application the legal surname that will be used after the marriage. An applicant may choose his or her given surname or his or her surname as changed by order of the superior court, the surname from a previous marriage, the spouse's surname, or a combination of the spouse's surname and the applicant's given or changed surname or surname from a previous marriage.
1. The parties must be of sound mind, must have no living spouse from an undissolved prior marriage, and must not be related in a degree prohibited by law. If the parties are at least 18 years of age, they may apply without parental consent. If either or both parties are less than 18 years of age, but at least 16 years of age, the parties may apply only with parental consent of the underage party or parties. Both parents must give written consent unless his/her rights have been terminated by an Order of a court.
2. Persons related by blood or marriage, falling within the following relationships may not be married in Georgia: (1) father and daughter or stepdaughter, (2) mother and son or stepson, (3) brother and sister of the whole blood or half blood, (4) grandparent and grandchild, (5) aunt and nephew, and (6) uncle and niece.
Premarital Education Program:
1. Under Georgia Law, a couple who present to the court at the time of making application a certificate of completion of a qualifying premarital education program shall not be assessed a marriage license fee(other charges may apply). The premarital education shall include at least six hours of instruction involving marital issues, which may include but not be limited to conflict management, communication skills, financial responsibilities, child and parenting responsibilities, and extended family roles. The premarital education shall be completed within 12 months prior to the application for a marriage license and the couple shall undergo the premarital education together. The premarital education shall be performed by:
(1) A professional counselor, social worker, or marriage and family therapist who is licensed pursuant to Chapter 10A of Title 43;
(2) A psychiatrist who is licensed as a physician pursuant to Chapter 34 of Title 43;
(3) A psychologist who is licensed pursuant to Chapter 39 of Title 43; or
(4) An active member of the clergy when in the course of his or her service as clergy or his or her designee, including retired clergy, provided that a designee is trained and skilled in premarital education.
1. Check the individual county probate courts for more information concerning each court.