Alaska Marriage Laws

Alaska state statutes addressing marriage are unique and specific. This article has gathered all of the information that you will need to know as a wedding officiant or as a member of a couple getting married in the state of Alaska. This page includes the details about rules and requirements within the state as well as the actual law, so you can have a legally recognized wedding ceremony.

This Alaska wedding laws guide has all of the important bullet points covering the most commonly asked questions, and detailed sections covering the whole process from start to finish.

Requirements for the Minister

Min. Age of Minister:
Age 18
Residency:
Not Required
Document(s) Required:
Varies by County
Online Ordination Recognized:
Yes
Relevant Office of Registration:
Vital Records Office
Latest Document(s) Submission Date Allowed:
After Ceremony
Minister I.D. # Issued:
No

Ministers who are officiating weddings in Alaska must be at least 18 years of age, which is also the age requirement to be ordained online with the Universal Life Church. The residency, religious affiliation, race, and gender do not affect the minister’s ability to officiate.

The first thing a minister who is planning to officiate in Alaska should do is contact the office issuing marriage licenses. Make an inquiry with that office if they will need anything from the minister before performing a wedding. They may want to see some form of paperwork or documentation, so we always recommend that at minimum the officiant have a copy of the ministry license on hand. Most ULC ministers performing weddings in Alaska elect to order the Classic Wedding Package for this purpose.

Wedding Ceremony Requirements

Marriage By Proxy Allowed:
No
Minister Required to be Present:
Yes

The minister, couple, and two witnesses must be present for the ceremony in Alaska. They are required to be physically present and to sign the marriage license after the ceremony takes place. Alaska does not allow marriages by proxy.

As far as the wording of the ceremony, that can be entirely customized to the preferences of the couple. The legally required portion is the “I do’s”, also known as the consent to marry. This will make sure the wedding is legally binding and meets the requirements of the law in Alaska.

Marriage License Requirements

Min. Age of Witnesses:
Not Applicable
Couple's Consent Required:
Yes
Pronouncement Required:
No

The members of the couple may go in person to submit the application and pick up the marriage license, or they can mail in the application. They have the option of adding in extra money with the mail in option to have the document expedited back to them.

The couple will be asked to show a standard government issued I.D. and pay the $60 fee to obtain the marriage license in Alaska. If either of the couple has had a divorce finalized within 60 days they will also be asked to provide an official copy of the divorce decree.

States no longer require blood tests from the couple in order to obtain the marriage license.

Marriage License Facts

ULC-Officiated Ceremony Type:
Religious
Mandatory Waiting Period:
3 Days
License Valid For:
90 Days
License Must Be Submitted:
Within 7 Days of Ceremony

Make sure that the marriage license is for a religious ceremony. Weddings officiated by a ULC minister are always classified as religious, regardless of the beliefs of the couple or in inclusion of religious elements and references in the ceremony. Because the Universal Life Church ordination is what gives the minister the legal authority to perform the ceremony, they are considered “religious” ceremonies.

There is a mandatory 3 day waiting period between applying and receiving the marriage license. After it is issued, the license is valid for a ceremony that takes place within 90 days.

Once the wedding is solemnized and the signatures of all parties are added to the document, it must be returned to the office that issued it within 7 days.

Requirements for the Couple

Min. Age of Couple:
Age 18 or Age 16 with Guardian Consent
Residency:
Not Required
Min. Distance of Kin Allowed:
First Cousins
Marriage Equality:
Yes

In Alaska, adults 18 years of age or older as well as persons 16 years of age and older with parental consent can legally marry. There are additional exceptions for those 14 years of age wanting to marry if permission is granted by the guardian and by a Superior Court Judge. Cases going before the courts are determined on a case by case basis.

Alaska does not have a residency requirement for either member of the couple. This means neither person needs to be a resident of the state, and they can live anywhere inside or outside of the US and get married in Alaska.

All U.S. states including Alaska honor marriage equality so same-sex couples can legally wed there.

Final Steps

Officiant's Title on Marriage License:
Minister
Church/Ordaining Body:
Universal Life Church Ministries
Address of Church:
Minister's Home Address

Upon the completion of the wedding ceremony there are a couple of items that will need to be completed to make sure the wedding is legally recognized.

In the portion of the marriage license that is for the officiant, the minister must fill it out with the relevant information. If it asks for a title, make sure to put “minister”. In the name field, put the full legal name with no titles. And if it asks for the address of the church the minister should list their personal address of their home ministry in the case that the state needs to reach out to them for any questions. If it asks for the ordaining church, then list Universal Life Church.

Make sure both members of the couple and the two witnesses also sign that document, and that it is filled out fully and completely. Errors may lead to having to get a new license issued. Finally it will need to be returned back to the vital records office within 7 days of the ceremony to be legally filed and recorded with the state.

We always recommend that our ministers keep a personal record of any marriages or any other ceremonies that they perform. This is especially true if there is any exchange of money or a contract for services. Most of all, have a wonderful day and enjoy celebrating a day filled with love!