How to Perform a Wedding in Delaware

Created and reviewed for accuracy by researchers at the Universal Life Church Ministries

Delaware Outline

Congratulations! If you've found yourself at this page it is likely that you are either planning to be married or have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in Delaware. Ordained ministers of the Universal Life Church have successfully performed thousands of legal marriages in Delaware. The information provided below will walk you through the steps one must follow to become a minister and perform a valid wedding ceremony in the state of Delaware.

Quick Facts
  • ULC Ordination Accepted: Yes
  • Minister Registration Required: No
  • Minister's Residency: Irrelevant
  • Minister's Minimum Age: 18
  •  
  • Marriage License Waiting Period: 1 Day
  • Marriage License Valid For: 30 Days
  • Marriage License Return Within: By Expiration

1 How to Become an Ordained Minister in Delaware

If you haven't already, you should get ordained online with the Universal Life Church. Ordination is free and can be completed in just a matter of minutes. Thousands of legally valid marriages are performed by ULC ministers around the world every year. Begin the process by clicking the big blue button below!

2 Officiating a Wedding in Delaware

Next, you should contact the office of your local marriage authority (typically your county clerk). Let them know that you are a minister of the Universal Life Church in Seattle, and ask what they will require of you to officiate a legal marriage.

Select your Marriage Bureau to quickly generate the contact information for your local marriage authority.



Select a county contact

Delaware's Top Wedding Spot

Delaware's Top Wedding Spot

Henry Francis du Pont's Winterthur Estate, near Wilmington

3 License to Marry in Delaware

After you've contacted your marriage authority, you should visit our online store to purchase whatever documentation will be required. We typically advise ministers in Delaware to get an Ordination Package. While Minister registration is not technically required in Delaware you may be asked to display proof of your ordination to the county clerks before they will accept the marriage as having been legally solemnized. Having this proof of your ordination will also provide peace-of-mind to any couple that you intend to marry. Additionally, please attempt to leave at least 3 weeks between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials in advance.

4 How to get Married in Delaware

Now that you've done all of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! Be sure that the couple has picked up their Delaware marriage license from the appropriate office. This license is valid for 30 days, and there is a mandatory 1-day waiting period between when the couple receives the marriage license in Delaware and when the ceremony may be legally performed. Please be aware that the signed license must be returned to the issuing office by its date of expiry.

At the Universal Life Church we receive several calls from wedding officiants in Delaware, after they've received their license to marry by getting ordained online, asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony. Once the legal matters have been taken care of, officiating a wedding (while a sometimes-daunting task) can be a great deal of fun. We would suggest that new Delaware wedding ministers concerned about the ceremony peruse one of our helpful wedding guides. The minister training section of our website should offer a helpful refresher for more experienced ministers.

5 Guide to Planning a Wedding in Delaware

It is wonderful to be asked to participate in an event as special as a wedding, and officiating is a great honor. If you are going to be performing a wedding in Delaware, there are some details to consider that may prove helpful to your planning. Home to three centuries of beautiful estates, churches, and farmhouses, as well as 28 miles of coastline, the wedding venues in Delaware are varied and plentiful. Despite all of the obvious draws of a Delaware beach wedding, you might be surprised that 60% of Delaware weddings take place indoors. Regardless, you may need to consider weather as an important element, and dress accordingly. The amount a wedding officiant charges for services in Delaware varies based on several factors, things like: the complexity of the ceremony, how much experience the officiant has, how much involvement in the planning they will have, and whether they’ll be asked to travel.


Delaware Flag

Delaware Marriage Code

Marriage in Delaware is governed by Title 13 of Delaware's General Statutes. Ministers who got ordained online with the Universal Life Church have successfully solemnized thousands of weddings in the state. Below, you will find that we have reproduced a relevant excerpt of this code.

§ 106 Solemnization of marriages; production of license; penalty; registration of persons authorized to solemnize marriages. (a)",A clergyperson or minister of any religion, current and former Judges of this State's Supreme Court, Superior Court, Family Court, Court of Chancery, Court of Common Pleas, Justice of the Peace Court, federal Judges, federal Magistrates, clerks of the peace of various counties and current and former judges from other jurisdictions with written authorization by the clerk of the peace from the county in Delaware where the ceremony is to be performed may solemnize marriages between persons who may lawfully enter into the matrimonial relation. View the Delaware Statutes on the official state site.

To view the in-depth wedding laws for Delaware state:

Delaware Marriage Laws
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Kent County

555 Bay Rd
Dover, Delaware
19901

Phone: (302) 744-2346
Fax: (302) 760-4763
Kent County website »

New Castle County

800 N. French St. 2nd Floor
Wilmington, Delaware
19801

Phone: (302) 395-7780
New Castle County website »

Sussex County

2 The Circle (PO Box 589)
Georgetown, Delaware

Phone: (302) 855-7700
Sussex County website »