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Montana Marriage License and Blood Test Requirements

Before a couple can get married they must obtain a marriage license from the state that they want to get married in. Every state has its own marriage license requirements. This article outlines the marriage license requirements in Montana.

District court clerks issue marriage licenses in Montana. A couple should apply for their marriage license with the local clerk. However, if neither party resides in Montana, then the couple can obtain a marriage license from the clerk in the district where the marriage is going to be performed. A marriage license authorizes a marriage ceremony to be performed in any county of the state.

Code Section

Montana Code section 40-1-107: Marriage Licenses

What Must be Included on a Marriage License Application?

The following information must be provided on a marriage license application:
  • The name, sex, address, social security number, and date and place of birth of each party to the proposed marriage
  • If either party was previously married, the party's name and the date, place, and court in which the marriage was dissolved or declared invalid, or the date and place of death of the former spouse
  • The name and address of the parents or guardian of each party, and
  • Whether the parties are related to each other and, if so, their relationship

Required Documentation

  • Each applicant must provide a birth certificate (or other satisfactory evidence of age)
  • If the applicant is a minor, documentation that the district court has approved the marriage, and
  • Each woman must (unless exempt) submit a medical certificate from a licensed physician stating that the applicant has been given a blood test for rubella immunity, that the results of the test have been shown to the applicant tested and the other party to the proposed marriage

Applicants Must be Sober

A marriage license won't be issued if either member of the couple is under the influence of intoxicating liquor or narcotic drugs while applying for the license.

Prohibited Marriages

In Montana, the following marriages are prohibited:

  • A marriage entered into before the dissolution of an earlier marriage of one of the parties
  • A marriage between an ancestor and a descendant or between a brother and a sister (whether the relationship is by the half or whole blood)
  • A marriage between an uncle and a niece or between an aunt and a nephew (whether the relationship is by the half or whole blood), or
  • A marriage between people of the same sex

Are Minors Allowed to Marry in Montana?

Minors who are 16 or 17 years old and wish to get married in Montana must receive permission from a district court judge before they will be issued a marriage license. The minor must have the consent of both parents (or of the parent with the actual care, parenting authority, and control to the party's marriage), or the consent of the party's guardian. The judge will require the couple to participate in marriage counseling, and then will determine whether the underage party is capable of assuming the responsibilities of marriage and whether the marriage will serve the minor's best interests.

Effective Period of License

Marriage licenses in Montana are effective from the date of issuance and expire after 180 days.

Blood Test

Montana is the only state that requires a blood test as a marriage license requirement. Each female applicant (unless exempt) must be given a blood test for rubella immunity, and the results of the test must be shown to the applicant tested and to the other party to the proposed marriage.

A female applicant can be exempted from taking the blood test if the couple files an informed consent form acknowledging receiving and understanding the written rubella immunity information and declining the rubella immunity testing. The informed consent form must include:

  • The reasons for undergoing a blood test for rubella immunity
  • The information that the results would provide about the woman's rubella antibody status
  • The risks associated with remaining uninformed of the rubella antibody status, and
  • Contact information indicating where the applicants may obtain additional information regarding rubella and rubella testing

Additional Resources

State laws change frequently. For case specific information regarding Montana's marriage license and blood test requirements contact a local family law lawyer.

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