Cook County seal

If you’ve been asked to perform a wedding in Cook County, congratulations! Officiating a wedding ceremony is a tremendous honor, though one that also comes with considerable responsibility. This guide will explain how to prepare for a wedding ceremony, how to get in touch with the relevant office in charge of marriages, how to ensure the union is legally recognized in Cook County, and more. Buckle up, we're going to cover the process step-by-step to make sure you understand exactly how to approach this important task.

1 Become an Ordained Minister in Cook County

Step one is an easy one: get ordained as a ULC minister (if you have already done this, great!). ULC ordination is entirely free, available online, and provides the power to perform legal wedding ceremonies! Thanks to our unique online model, the whole ordination process takes just minutes to complete. Get started by clicking the button below!

Key Info for Ministers in Cook County

ULC Ordination Accepted:
Yes
Minister Registration Required:
No
Documents Required:
N/A
Minister's Residency:
Irrelevant
Minister's Minimum Age:
18

2 Confirm Wedding Officiant Requirements in Cook County

Now that you're an ordained minister, your next move will be to get in touch with the office that handles marriages and marriage licenses in Cook County. Explain that you’re a minister preparing for an upcoming wedding, and you're inquiring about what documents or information they'll need from you before you officiate the wedding in their jurisdiction.

You'll find contact information for the office in Cook County listed below.

Office Address:
118 N. Clark Street, Room 120
Chicago, IL 60602
Office Phone Number:
(312) 603-5656
Office Website:
Cook County Office Website

3 Order Necessary Documentation to Officiate in Cook County

Once you connect with those officials, you can head over to our online catalog, where you'll be able to order any documents or supplies they require of you. While ultimately this will depend on the specific guidance you receive when speaking with local officials, we typically advise ministers in Cook County to get the Classic Wedding Package.

4 Officiate a Wedding and Fill Out the Cook County Marriage License

Finally, you're now ready to perform the wedding! If it’s your first time officiating, be sure to check out our wedding training center for more in-depth guides to everything related to weddings. And for those more experienced: take a look, too! There are lots of useful tools that could help make your job easier.

After the ceremony is over, don't forget to complete the final task: filling out the marriage license. In Cook County, this license is valid for 60 days, there is a mandatory 1 day waiting period and the completed license must be returned before its listed expiration date. Please visit our marriage license training guide guide to learn more about how to fill out this document.

Marriage License Waiting Period:
1 Day
Marriage License Valid For:
60 Days
Return Within:
By Expiration

5 How to Write a Wedding Officiant Script in Cook County

Wedding officiants in Cook County regularly reach out to our support team seeking guidance on what words to use during a wedding ceremony following their online ordination.

After ensuring all the legal elements are in order, the fun phase begins – planning and conducting the ceremony itself! We certainly acknowledge that this might be a bit overwhelming, especially for first-time wedding officiants... so we've built a bunch of tools to help out officiants of any level.

For Cook County wedding officiants, we highly recommend consulting our previously mentioned helpful wedding guides. Furthermore, we suggest making the most of the other free resources on our website, such as our wedding ceremony script generator. This unique tool empowers you to input specific details about the planned ceremony and the couple's preferences, resulting in a completely tailored wedding script.

Officiants should explore some of our online sample wedding scripts as well. These pre-written ceremony scripts can be printed and used as-is or serve as additional inspiration as you create your own script in conjunction with the couple. In any case, they are both great script resources for any wedding ceremony you're asked to officiate. And don't forget, for wedding officiant clothing or other necessities for the big day, our wedding catalog is exclusively available to those ordained by the ULC!

6 What to Know About Cook County Wedding Ceremonies

Soon-to-be-weds can celebrate their love story within the vibrant energy of Chicago if they choose a Cook County, Illinois wedding. This iconic urban setting offers a wealth of wedding venues, from chic downtown spaces to historic landmarks. Whether couples envision a skyline ceremony, or a more intimate affair in the suburbs, Cook County provides many diverse options for crafting a memorable celebration. With a wedding season that accommodates various preferences and a cityscape that adds a unique charm, a wedding in Cook County will be a truly unforgettable experience for everybody involved.