Frequently Asked Questions
Can we meet our officiant in-person before our wedding?
Of course! Whenever possible, we always try to meet our couples in-person before their ceremonies. If you are from out of town, we are happy to speak over the phone or via Skype, and we do NOT charge any additional fees for meetings or for phone calls to discuss your ceremony
What are your rates?
Our rates are between $400 and $600 depending on the complexity and the timing of your ceremony.
Do you require a deposit?
Yes, we require a $100 to secure the date of your wedding which can be paid via PayPal, by personal check or by cash in person.
How do we apply for our Marriage License?
You'll find everything you need to know about applying for your Marriage License in New York City here: The City Clerks website. Please be aware that, except in very specific circumstances, a Marriage License issued by the New York City Clerk's Office needs 24 hours to mature, and expires in 60 days. This means that there must be at least 24 hours between the time you are issued your Marriage License and your ceremony, and that your ceremony must take place within 60 days of when you obtained your Marriage License. You can visit the NYC City Clerk's Website
What if we're getting married in New York City, but our Marriage License was issued by a Clerk's Office outside the city?
Your Marriage License does not have to be issued by the New York City Clerk's Office -- you may use a valid Marriage License that is issued by any Clerk's Office in New York State for your wedding in New York City. But your Marriage License must be issued by a Clerk's Office within New York State -- you cannot use a Marriage License issue in New Jersey, Connecticut or any other state.
Who submits the signed Marriage License to the Clerk's Office after our ceremony?
Once all necessary parties have signed your Marriage License, your officiant will take the license and mail it to the Clerk's Office in the envelope that the Clerk's Office gave you when you were issued the license. However, before placing it in the mail, your Officiant will make a copy of the license for her records and will happily send you a copy if you'd like. If you would like to obtain your Marriage Certificate from the Clerk's Office in person, please see answer to "What if we need a copy of our Marriage Certificate sooner than 6 to 8 weeks?"
Do we need a witness for our ceremony?
Yes, you need at least one witness for your ceremony, though you are allowed to have two. The only requirement is that any witness be over the age of 18; it is not necessary that he or she live in the United States. If you need assistance obtaining a witness, we are happy to provide one during your ceremony for an additional fee.
How soon after our wedding can we expect to receive our Marriage Certificate?
The short answer is "it depends." It is not uncommon for it to take up to 6 to 8 weeks for your Marriage Certificate to arrive, especially if you are married during the height of wedding season in the late spring to early fall when the Clerk's Office is at its busiest. However, we've also had clients receive their Marriage Certificates in just a couple of weeks, though that is usually the exception, not the norm.
What if we need our Marriage Certificate sooner than 6 to 8 weeks?
If you need a copy of your Marriage Certificate more quickly, just one, or both of you may take your signed marriage license to the Manhattan Clerk's Office Only on the next business day following your wedding. The Clerk's Office will process your license on the spot and issue you a Marriage Certificate that day.
We are from a foreign country - how do we make sure our marriage is legally recognized back home?
New York City is a wonderful place to get married, and we love that so many couples travel from other countries to celebrate their weddings in this amazing city. However, before traveling to New York to get married, please remember to contact the authorities in your home country and confirm what you'll need in terms of documentation so that your marriage is recognized at home. Once you know what is required by your own government, you'll know what questions to ask the Clerk's Office when you apply for your Marriage License and what steps are necessary to get the documents that you'll need!
A great place to start is the City Clerks website where, under the heading "Fees," you'll find information regarding how to obtain an Extended Marriage Certificate and Apostille in person. In addition, you'll find information on how to request an Extended Marriage Certificate by mail under the heading "Marriage Records Request by Mail". If you have any additional questions, please don't hesitate to call the City Clerk's Office directly to be sure you know how to obtain whatever is necessary to make your marriage legal in your own country. As you might imagine, the Manhattan Clerk's Office can be a bit difficult to reach, so we've included the contact information for those offices in New York's other boroughs as they will also be able to answer your questions.
City Clerk's Office Phone numbers
Staten Island 718-816-2290
Do we need a permit to get married in Central Park?
If you plan to have more than 20 people at your wedding, then you need a permit. And though a permit is not required for a wedding of less than 20 people, we strongly recommend getting a permit if you would like to get married in some of the most popular ceremony locations in Central Park, including Cop Cot, Ladies Pavilion, or Shakespeare Garden -- this ensures that no one else will be trying to get married at the same time and at the same place that you are. You'll find more information regarding how to obtain a permit on the NYC Parks & Recreation Department's website .
Check out our blog to see pictures of some of our favorite ceremony locations.
Though permits are only $25, please note that the Parks & Rec Department requests 21 to 30 days to process a permit, so consider getting the process started as soon as possible. You'll need a US address in order to apply for a permit, but if you don't have an address here in the states, we are happy to apply for the permit on your behalf. And because weekend weddings in the spring, summer and fall are quite popular in Central Park, it's possible that a permit may not be available for the more well-known locations. But don't worry -- that doesn't mean you can't get married in Central Park! We are very familiar with Central Park and have a number of suggestions for less well-known and more intimate ceremony locations throughout the park.