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How to Get Married in Colorado

Published on March 5th, 2023

How to get married in colorado

How to Get Married in Colorado

If you are researching how to get married in Colorado, you’ve stumbled on the most exciting place to get all the info. Because let’s face it, the government is wonderful at making things as confusing as possible 😉 Aside from our breathtaking views and diverse landscapes, there are so many pros to the legal side of getting married in Colorado, especially for eloping couples!

How do I get a marriage license in Colorado?

This totally depends on the county, but it’s usually an easy process. Most require you to be there in person during business hours to sign the application within 35 days of your wedding. If you are traveling to Colorado to get married, this is something to keep in mind. Most county’s allow you to pick up your marriage license when you apply in person so it’s normally something that can be done at the very beginning of your trip to Colorado. However, definitely check around to different counties that you’ll be in to see which ones have the easiest process. In addition, make sure both parties have a valid form of ID (birth certificates, drivers license, passport, or military ID cards), as well as you Social Security Number or an Affidavit Concerning Social Security Number completed.

Stressing about finding a location in the county you obtain your marriage license? Good news! You do not have to get married in the county where you obtain your license. As long as you are in Colorado and apply and file it in the same county you are good to go! After your elopement or wedding, you must send in your completed certificate within 60 days. Different counties have different time frames, however you should be safe within 60 days for most counties. Double check with the one you choose. 

Best counties to obtain your marriage license

Here are a few counties that make it easier than some. These cover the major areas you would be flying into, although I’m sure there are many more that are easy to work with. 

Arapahoe -in the Denver Area

Clear Creek – Close to Summit County

Park – Close to Breckenridge

San Miguel – Telluride

El Paso – Colorado Springs

Self Solemnization: What is it? And why is it so great for Adventure Elopements?

Did you know that you don’t have to have an officiant to legally get married in Colorado? Crazy right? All you have to do is solemnize your own marriage license by signing where the officiant would sign. BOOM, married. And yes, you are still recognized as legally married in the state you are from. 

This is amazing for elopements for so many reasons. If you are eloping, keeping things intimate is typically a huge priority. Eloping in Colorado means you don’t have to find someone (often times a stranger) with the specific qualifications to perform your ceremony and marry you. Because of this, your ceremony can be personal and private. Further, it can also be almost anywhere! Not having to worry about whether you can find an officiant to hike or off-road with you opens the door for you to find the perfect spot to exchange vows. The journey to your ceremony can be as adventurous as you are.

Intimate weddings also benefit from not needing an officiant. Self solemnizing allows someone close to you who knows your journey, to perform your ceremony. They just simply don’t sign as the officiant, you (the couple) does. It is so much more meaningful to have this option. Eloping with a small group of people, it feels all the more intimate when everyone involved truly knows you. I speak from personal experience as my Brother performed our ceremony. 

Other benefits to getting married in Colorado

If self solemnizing isn’t enough of a draw for you, maybe this next one will be. Witnesses aren’t required! Apparently anything flies in Colorado. I have had couples hike all day, have a completely private exchanging of vows, and then have their dog sign as a witness with a paw print. How freaking amazing is that?

Colorado just makes it easy to get married where and how you want. As I mentioned before, you don’t have to get married in the county you obtain your license in as long as it’s in Colorado. Easy peasy. Go ahead, have an elopement with your dog as your witness. No laws are stopping you.

But would if I want an officiant?

Some couples feel like they need someone to guide them in their ceremony. This is still a great option! This is your wedding, do what makes you most comfortable! There are many amazing officiants that will meet us in epic locations that will make it personal, make you laugh, and guide your ceremony. For many couples, this alleviates the pressure of knowing what to do or what comes next. They create a nice flow. Because let’s face it, most of us aren’t experts in how to direct our own wedding.

Getting Married in Colorado Checklist

  • Pick a date
  • Hire an elopement photographer (Oh look, you already found one!)
  • Pick a destination (I help with this)
  • Decide if you want an officiant or to self-solemnize
  • Research which county will be best to obtain your marriage license
  • Make your appointment to apply for the application within 35 days before your wedding
  • Have the best wedding day ever!
  • Fill out your marriage certificate
  • Return your marriage certificate to the county where you applied within 60 days

Where to get married in Colorado

Now that you know HOW to get married in Colorado, it’s time to start dreaming of WHERE. I’ve spent years exploring this state and know all the best places for every level of adventurer. As an elopement photographer and guide, I’m here to help you think through every aspect of your day starting with location. Together, we build an experience thats true to you and in a place that inspires you.

Want to get married in Colorado, but don’t know the lay of the land? Check out this in-depth blog where I explain all the different regions and share the best places to elope!

Meet your Colorado Elopement Photographer

Colorado Elopement photographer

Hey there! I’m probably a lot like you. An outdoorsy nerd that prefers the grandeur of the wild to almost anything indoors. Being out in nature, especially the mountains, is where I feel most alive and free to be myself. It’s no wonder why photographing adventure elopements comes so naturally to me. Getting to take adventure-seekers like yourselves to these awe-inspiring places and helping you have an incredible elopement experience is the best job I could ask for. Between my love for hiking and being a mom of 3 young boys, I was made for this. Prepared for anything, remaining calm, and overloaded with snacks! Let’s grab beer and start dreaming up your Colorado Elopement!