Code Section Group

Family Code - FAM

DIVISION 3. MARRIAGE [300 - 536]

  ( Division 3 enacted by Stats. 1992, Ch. 162, Sec. 10. )

PART 4. CONFIDENTIAL MARRIAGE [500 - 536]

  ( Part 4 enacted by Stats. 1992, Ch. 162, Sec. 10. )

CHAPTER 1. General Provisions [500 - 511]
  ( Chapter 1 enacted by Stats. 1992, Ch. 162, Sec. 10. )

500.
  

When two unmarried people, not minors, have been living together as spouses, they may be married pursuant to this chapter by a person authorized to solemnize a marriage under Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 400) of Part 3.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 474, Sec. 6. (AB 2882) Effective January 1, 2017.)

500.5.
  

For purposes of this part, the document issued by the county clerk is a marriage license until it is registered with the county clerk, at which time the license becomes a marriage certificate.

(Added by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 22. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

501.
  

Except as provided in Section 502, a confidential marriage license shall be issued by the county clerk upon the personal appearance together of the parties to be married and their payment of the fees required by Sections 26840.1 and 26840.8 of the Government Code and any fee imposed pursuant to the authorization of Section 26840.3 of the Government Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 23. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

502.
  

If for sufficient reason, as described in subdivision (d), either or both of the parties to be married are physically unable to appear in person before the county clerk, a confidential marriage license may be issued by the county clerk to the person solemnizing the marriage if the following requirements are met:

(a) The person solemnizing the marriage physically presents an affidavit to the county clerk explaining the reason for the inability to appear.

(b) The affidavit is signed under penalty of perjury by the person solemnizing the marriage and by both parties.

(c) The signature of any party to be married who is unable to appear in person before the county clerk is authenticated by a notary public or a court prior to the county clerk issuing the confidential marriage license.

(d) Sufficient reason includes proof of hospitalization, incarceration, or any other reason proved to the satisfaction of the county clerk.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 24. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

503.
  

The county clerk shall issue a confidential marriage license upon the request of a notary public approved by the county clerk to issue confidential marriage licenses pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 530) and upon payment by the notary public of the fees specified in Sections 26840.1 and 26840.8 of the Government Code. The parties shall reimburse a notary public who issues a confidential marriage license for the amount of the fees.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 25. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

504.
  

A confidential marriage license is valid only for a period of 90 days after its issuance by the county clerk.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 913, Sec. 16. (AB 2747) Effective January 1, 2015.)

505.
  

(a) The form of the confidential marriage license shall be prescribed by the State Registrar of Vital Statistics.

(b) The form shall be designed to require that the parties to be married declare or affirm that they meet all of the requirements of this chapter.

(c) The form shall include an affidavit, which the bride and groom shall sign, affirming that they have received the brochure provided for in Section 358.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 26. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

506.
  

(a) The confidential marriage license shall be presented to the person solemnizing the marriage.

(b) Upon performance of the ceremony, the solemnization section on the confidential marriage license shall be completed by the person solemnizing the marriage.

(c) The confidential marriage license shall be returned by the person solemnizing the marriage to the office of the county clerk in the county in which the license was issued within 10 days after the ceremony.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 27. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

508.
  

Upon issuance of a confidential marriage license, parties shall be provided with an application to obtain a certified copy of the confidential marriage certificate from the county clerk.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 28. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

509.
  

(a) A party to a confidential marriage may obtain a certified copy of the confidential marriage certificate from the county clerk of the county in which the certificate is filed by submitting an application that satisfies the requirements of Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 103525) of Part 1 of Division 102 of the Health and Safety Code.

(b) Copies of a confidential marriage certificate may be issued to the parties to the marriage upon payment of the fee equivalent to that charged for copies of a marriage certificate.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 412, Sec. 2. (AB 130) Effective January 1, 2010.)

510.
  

(a) If a confidential marriage license is lost, damaged, or destroyed after the performance of the marriage, but before it is returned to the county clerk, or deemed unacceptable for registration by the county clerk, the person solemnizing the marriage, in order to comply with Section 506, shall obtain a duplicate marriage license by filing an affidavit setting forth the facts with the county clerk of the county in which the license was issued.

(b) The duplicate license may not be issued later than one year after issuance of the original license and shall be returned by the person solemnizing the marriage to the county clerk within one year of the issuance date shown on the original marriage license.

(c) The county clerk may charge a fee to cover the actual costs of issuing a duplicate marriage license.

(d) If a marriage license is lost, damaged, or destroyed before a marriage ceremony takes place, the applicants shall purchase a new marriage license and the old license shall be voided.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 30. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

511.
  

(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), the county clerk shall maintain confidential marriage certificates filed pursuant to Section 506 as permanent records which shall not be open to public inspection except upon order of the court issued upon a showing of good cause. The confidential marriage license is a confidential record and not open to public inspection without an order from the court.

(b) The county clerk shall keep all original certificates of confidential marriages for one year from the date of filing. After one year, the clerk may reproduce the certificates pursuant to Section 26205 of the Government Code, and dispose of the original certificates. The county clerk shall promptly seal and store at least one original negative of each microphotographic film made in a manner and place as reasonable to ensure its preservation indefinitely against loss, theft, defacement, or destruction. The microphotograph shall be made in a manner that complies with the minimum standards or guidelines, or both, recommended by the American National Standards Institute or the Association for Information and Image Management. Every reproduction shall be deemed and considered an original. A certified copy of any reproduction shall be deemed and considered a certified copy of the original.

(c) The county clerk may conduct a search for a confidential marriage certificate for the purpose of confirming the existence of a marriage, but the date of the marriage and any other information contained in the certificate shall not be disclosed except upon order of the court.

(d) The county clerk shall, not less than quarterly, transmit copies of all original confidential marriage certificates retained, or originals of reproduced confidential marriage certificates filed after January 1, 1982, to the State Registrar of Vital Statistics. The registrar may destroy the copies so transmitted after they have been indexed. The registrar may respond to an inquiry as to the existence of a marriage performed pursuant to this chapter, but shall not disclose the date of the marriage.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 816, Sec. 31. Effective January 1, 2007. Operative January 1, 2008, by Sec. 56 of Ch. 816.)

FAMFamily Code - FAM