There are so many reasons that couples come from all over the country to get married in Vermont. The rolling green mountains, incredible summer sunsets, cooling lakes and rivers, and ski resorts that are hard to beat.
As a Vermont elopement and wedding photographer, I help adventurous and outdoorsy couples plan their celebrations to make it the most epic and memorable day. I often find that many who are planning their Vermont wedding have questions about the logistics and steps needed to get married in Vermont, so I wanted to break it down for you to keep it simple!
Here’s how to get married in Vermont
Applying for and filing a marriage license
Here’s a step-by-step guide on filing for your marriage license and certificate from vermont.com.
- An eligible couple must submit an application for a license in the Vermont town/city where one of the parties lives (out-of-state couples can go to any town/city clerk). The couple must pay the applicable fee and will receive a marriage license from the clerk.
- A marriage license cannot be issued through the mail, and you cannot be married by a proxy. You can download a copy of the marriage license application and have it ready for the town clerk before you arrive at their office. Both parties MUST sign the application.
- The couple must have the marriage solemnized (i.e., have a ceremony) within 60 days of filing the application.
- Once the ceremony has been performed, the person who performed it has 10 days to send the license back to the city/town where it was issued. It must be signed by both parties and by the officiant.
- The city/town clerk will then file the original and the couple can receive an official certificate of their marriage.
Getting Married in Vermont – Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any age restrictions for getting married in Vermont?
Yes, you must be over 18 years old, or 16 with parent or guardian consent.
What other restrictions are there for getting married in Vermont?
You cannot marry relatives or marry a new partner if you are already in a current marriage. The law requires that both parties be of sound mind.
Do we need a marriage license?
Yes, see steps 1-4 above. The Vermont marriage license costs $60 and is only valid for 60 days after application. A marriage license cannot be issued through the mail, and you cannot be married by a proxy. You can download a copy of the marriage license application and have it ready for the town clerk before you arrive at their office. Both parties MUST sign the application. ‘
Do we need an officiant?
Yes – and you have many options! A Supreme Court justice, a superior court judge, a district judge, a judge of probate, an assistant judge, a justice of the peace or an ordained or licensed member of the clergy residing in Vermont can perform your wedding ceremony.
How do we get a copy of our marriage certificate after we submit our marriage license?
At the time you buy your marriage license, you can arrange with the town clerk to mail you a certified copy of your certificate as soon as your marriage has been recorded.
For more details, visit vermont.gov.
Frequently asked questions for planning a small wedding or elopement
Where should we get married?
Vermont has SO many options for beautiful places to celebrate on your wedding or elopement day. If you’re planning an adventure elopement, there’s really no limit to where you can get married! Your options range from a local state park or beach to an adventurous hike up through Mount Mansfield to watch the sun set and say your vows. Check out my blog post, Eight Adventurous Places to Elope in Vermont for some inspiration!
If you’re planning a small celebration with guests, my advice is to rent an AirNbN, cabin, or lodging of some sort to have as a home base for your friends and family. Many inns and lodges offer Vermont elopement packages that are affordable and flexible for small weddings!
What other wedding vendors should we consider hiring?
It’s completely up to you, but here are some of the essentials that I recommend:
- Wedding venue or lodging
- Hair and/or makeup artist
How should we plan our timeline for our elopement or small wedding?
Though every wedding celebration is unique, it’s important to plan a tentative timeline for the day so that your photographer and wedding vendors know exactly what you want to plan for your incredible day together!
Generally, photography coverage for elopements can range from 4 – 8 hours, while weddings are usually closer to 8 – 10 hours. If you’re not sure how much time you need with your photographer, you can check out a sample elopement timeline on my website here!
We are ready to start planning our Vermont elopement or small wedding! Where should we start?
Ready to take the plunge? Check out 10 Adventurous Vermont Elopement Ideas on the blog to start planning your Vermont elopement or small wedding today!