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Charleston, SC is the #1 destination site for getting married. Maybe it's the romance, the weather, the scenery; who could possibly argue with any of these? But, there are some things you need to know...

Marriage in South Carolina

The Legalities

To get married in the state of South Carolina, you need to obtain a marriage license. The following requirements apply to both residents and non-residents;

  • Both spouses-to-be (either opposite or same sex couples can be married in South Carolina) must appear together at the office of a South Carolina County Probate Judge and file a written application. This application asks for the full name, social security number, age, and place of residence of both spouses. It is a sworn statement that must be signed by both parties to the marriage, and then notarized in the office of the Probate Judge. 

  • Some Probate Judges require both spouses to show their social security cards. 

  • There is a waiting period after the application is filed before the license can be picked up and the marriage can take place. The waiting period varies from county to county, so please contact the appropriate county Probate Judge at least a week before you plan to get married. 

  • If you are 18 years of age or older, you do not need parental consent. But, you must provide proof of your age (or, simply verification if you are over the age of 25) by presenting one of the following:


- Valid driver's license

- Original birth certificate or certified copy of birth certificate

- Current military identification card

- Current passport

- No blood test or physical exam required.

- South Carolina residency is NOT necessary.

- No proof of divorce (if applicable) is required.

-The fee for a marriage license varies from county to county.

-Only CASH is accepted (not personal checks or credit cards).

  • A South Carolina marriage license is valid only for marriages performed in South Carolina.

  • There is no expiration for a South Carolina marriage license.



The name entered onto the marriage license is the name of the bride PRIOR to the marriage.  If the bride desires her name to be changed, she must go to the Social Security office and complete the necessary forms with a certified copy of the marriage license.

In order to obtain a certified copy of the license, you can go to the courthouse where you obtained the license and request a certified copy for $5.00 (cash only). You will need this, plus the forms when you go to the Social Security office.

Please see the Social Security office website for more information. 



Information reprinted courtesy of SCIWAY.NET' SC marriage guide.

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