What is the difference between a public and a confidential marriage license?


So it’s time to get married and you have to make a choice of getting a confidential marriage license or a public marriage license.

Let me break down the difference between the two so you can make an educated choice.

First off both public and confidential marriage licenses have the same effect, you’re married! They’re both just as legal and enforceable for any use and need.

A public marriage license requires one or two witnesses to sign the marriage license. The license is recorded and made a matter of public record. Once it’s recorded the couple can obtain  copy of their marriage license. But also so can your friends, Family, employers, telemarketers, identity thieves. Since it is a matter of public record it is exactly that.

A confidential marriage license requires no witnesses to sign it’s just the Officiant. The marriage license is recorded but is only accessible by the couple. No one else can go down to the county or do a record search and find that document.

These days with identity theft issues and I recommend to my couples that they obtain a confidential marriage license.

The county clerks offices issue both the confidential and the public marriage license.

Many counties in California have appointed specialized notaries Who act as agents for the county clerks office to issue only the confidential marriage license. It’s like what AAA does for the DMV.

Great Officiants has four specialized notaries on the team. We can issue marriage licenses to couples Who are getting married anywhere in California. We can deliver it anywhere in the state or it can be issued at our Long Beach facility.

To apply for your marriage license through us simply go to our marriage license application page. Click here now.

If you have any questions feel free to give us a call at 562-435-4000.

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