Frequently Asked Questions
7. Can you write your own vows?
Yes, your day is special to you, you should have vows with meaning to both of you. The vows must meet minimum
California family law requirements.
2. Can a friend or family member preform the ceremony?
Yes, however, the State of California requires the person preforming/officiating the ceremony be ordained. I can help, it's
3. What is Bayview Officiants?
A website which lists a group of independent officiants so you can contact them directly and make your own arrangements
for the variety of services they provide. Officiants listed are not under any contract or obligation to Bayview Officiants
webmaster. Each officiant sets their own pricing and their own contracts.
4. What areas are covered by officiants listed on this site?
That is totally up to the individual officiant and the arrangements you and the independent officiant agree upon.
More questions answered as they come in.
5. Are any Bayview Officiants bilingual?
Unfortunately, we do not have any bilingual officiants associated with Bayview Officiants at this time. However, vows can
be spoken with space time to allow for interpretation by a family member or friend.
9. What is required in California to get married?
The following is a copy of the California Family Code regarding marriage.
420. (a) No particular form for the ceremony of marriage is
required for solemnization of the marriage, but the parties shall
declare, in the physical presence of the person solemnizing the
marriage and necessary witnesses, that they take each other as
husband and wife.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), a member of the Armed Forces
of the United States who is stationed overseas and serving in a
conflict or a war and is unable to appear for the licensure and
solemnization of the marriage may enter into that marriage by the
appearance of an attorney in fact, commissioned and empowered in
writing for that purpose through a power of attorney. The attorney in
fact must personally appear at the county clerk's office with the
party who is not stationed overseas, and present the original power
of attorney duly signed by the party stationed overseas and
acknowledged by a notary or witnessed by two officers of the United
States Armed Forces. Copies in any form, including by facsimile, are
not acceptable. The power of attorney shall state the full given
names at birth, or by court order, of the parties to be married, and
that the power of attorney is solely for the purpose of authorizing
the attorney in fact to obtain a marriage license on the person's
behalf and participate in the solemnization of the marriage. The
original power of attorney shall be a part of the marriage
certificate upon registration.
(c) No contract of marriage, if otherwise duly made, shall be
invalidated for want of conformity to the requirements of any
421. Before solemnizing a marriage, the person solemnizing the
marriage shall require the presentation of the marriage license. If
the person solemnizing the marriage has reason to doubt the
correctness of the statement of facts in the marriage license, the
person must be satisfied as to the correctness of the statement of
facts before solemnizing the marriage. For this purpose, the person
may administer oaths and examine the parties and witnesses in the
same manner as the county clerk does before issuing the license.
422. The person solemnizing a marriage shall, sign and print or
type upon the marriage license a statement, in the form prescribed by
the State Department of Public Health, showing all of the following:
(a) The fact, date (month, day, year), and place (city and county)
(b) The printed names, signatures, and mailing addresses of at
least one, and no more than two, witnesses to the ceremony.
(c) The official position of the person solemnizing the marriage,
or of the denomination of which that person is a priest, minister,
rabbi, or other authorized person of any religious denomination.
(d) The person solemnizing the marriage shall also type or print
his or her name and mailing address.
423. The person solemnizing the marriage shall return the marriage
license, endorsed as required in Section 422, to the county recorder
of the county in which the license was issued within 10 days after
425. If no record of the solemnization of a California marriage
previously contracted under this division for that marriage is known
to exist, the parties may purchase a License and Certificate of
Declaration of Marriage from the county clerk in the parties' county
of residence one year or more from the date of the marriage. The
license and certificate shall be returned to the county recorder of
the county in which the license was issued.
426. 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 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
(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 marriage
(d) Sufficient reason includes proof of hospitalization,
incarceration, or any other reason proved to the satisfaction of the
6. What is an Elopement package, a Basic package, and a Custom package ?
An elopement is a pre-written ceremony with only the couple getting married and a few friends, usually under 10 people.
An Basic is a pre-written ceremony with over 10 people and may include a processional, recessional. Can include minor
A Custom is a ceremony which is created with components selected or written by couple getting married. Can include
blessings, readings, special items, and additional items the couple may desire. Usually designed for large weddings.
8. Can either bride or groom purchase a certified marriage certificate?
Yes, a bride or groom can purchase a certified copy of the marriage certificate either in person, via mail, or online. See the
county website for details.
1. Where can a couple get a marriage license in Monterey County?
You can get your marriage license at the Monterey County Recorder's Office located at 168 W. Alisal St. in Salinas.
OFFICE HOURS : Currently are Monday through Friday 8 AM to 4:30 PM for marriage licenses. For certificates, 8 AM to 5 PM.
|Click on the Monterey County icon
above to go to the Marriage page
for Monterey County for additional