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Marriage License Information

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Marriage License Information 


In order to make your onboard ceremony legal you must obtain a marriage license, Hornblower does not provide one.  It is the responsibility of the bride and groom to apply for one in advance and turn it in to the officiant (captain).  Our Hornblower captains are non-denominational ministers, licensed by the state of California.  Make sure that you write clergy on your application though, putting captain creates confusion.  You may apply for your license at the County Administration Center 1600 Pacific Highway, Suite 273 San Diego, CA (619) 237-0502.  Mon-Fri 8-4, an appointment is required.

Documents and Fees: As well as completing the application, you must show valid photo identification card or passport.  The document must show your full legal name (no abbreviations or initials) and your date of birth.  A copy of your birth certificate is handy, but not required.  Fees for San Diego County vary on the type of marriage license.

Type of License: Public: You may be married anywhere in the State of California.  A witness is required and the marriage becomes public record.  Confidential: You must marry in the county where the license is issued.  No witness required.  Only the bride and groom may obtain a certified copy of the license.

Time Frame: The license is immediately valid and remains valid for a period of 90 days in the State of California.  You may apply for one at any time, however you may want to avoid waiting until the last minute and obtain the license about a month in advance. 

Prior Marriages: You no longer have to provide proof, but it falls on the burden of the person involved.  For divorced persons, the divorce decree must be final prior to the application for a marriage license.

Age Requirements: Both male and female applicants must be 18 years of age in order to apply for a marriage license.  For anyone under 18, there are additional requirements, contact your County Clerk’s office.

Witnesses: On your special day of you will need to choose two witnesses who will sign after the ceremony

Filing your License: The officiant/minister/captain performing the ceremony is responsible for filing the document within 10 days of the ceremony.  Certified copies are available approximately 2-4 weeks after filing and may be obtained at the Recorder/County Clerk’s office.  Brides may need to obtain a few copies to facilitate name changes.



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The Zumbrota was the icing on the cake!!! The party was amazing, the guests were impressed with the boat, the crew and the beauty of it all and we had the best time. My kids had a wonderful wedding and priceless memories thanks in large part to you.

– Onnie H