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MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE PURCHASE CHANGES

Last modified: 12/19/2013 1:44 PM

Due to privacy concerns, the State of California has enacted regulations specified in AB 130 which limits the parties who may purchase a certified copy of a marriage certificates.

Effective 1/1/10, the California Health and Safety Code, Section 103526, permits only authorized individuals to receive certified copies of public marriage records. Those who are not authorized by law to receive a certified copy of a public marriage records will receive a certified copy marked "INFORMATIONAL, NOT A VALID DOCUMENT TO ESTABLISH IDENTITY."  The restrictions on the purchase of confidential marriage licenses remain unchanged. For public marriage records, the new law describes an authorized person as:

· The registrant or a parent or legal guardian of the registrant.

· A party entitled to receive the record as a result of a court order, or an attorney or a licensed adoption agency seeking the marriage record in order to comply with the requirements of Section 3140 or 7603 of the Family Code.

· A member of a law enforcement agency or a representative of another governmental agency, as provided by law, who is conducting official business.

· A child, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse, or domestic partner of the registrant

· An attorney representing the registrant or the registrant's estate, or any person or agency empowered by statute or appointed by a court to act on behalf of the registrant or the registrant’s estate.

For purchasing marriage certificate copies in person, starting 1/1/10 you will be required to show proof that you are an authorized party.  If you order a certified copy by mail you will be required to obtain a notarized statement to accompany the request. You also have the option of placing an order on-line on the Vital Check web site.  Starting 1/1/10, on-line orders require you to download an authorization form, get it completed (including notarization), and fax it to the Clerk-Recorders Office. There are instructions on the Vital Check web site.