The California Department of Public Health is the state repository for public records, including California Marriage Records. Marriage records are initially filed at a county clerk of court where the marriage license was issued before they are forwarded to the state repository.
Several vital pieces of information are included in a marriage file. Some of which include the names of the bride and the groom, their date of birth, time and date of marriage, names of witnesses, and others. A marriage file is not considered complete or final if it there is no marriage license. Once a license is granted, it is only valid for 90 days and if the couple fails to marry within that period, the license will expire. Divorce files should be presented by those who apply for a marriage license but have been married in the past.
Marriage documents are categorized into two kinds: one is authorized copies and the other is informational copies, both of which are certified versions. The former is allowed to be used in any legal proceedings, while the second one will simply be used only as an information aide.
To initiate a search, you can proceed to the Public Health office and secure the proper request form and supply all the required information. Supply as much information as you can to have a better chance of finding the right record and to shorten the return period, which usually takes several months. If you know the exact county that has the records, you can place a request to that county’s clerk of court. If you want to obtain an authorized copy of the records, secure a sworn statement and have it notarized. Present the completed request form, notarized sworn statement, a government-issued ID, and corresponding fees. All fees are non-refundable regardless of the outcome of the search.
There are websites that specialize in supplying marriage files. Look them up over the Internet and be careful not to run into a fake website. Yes, not all can be considered reliable sources of information. Write down a few websites that you consider on using and run a background check on them; gather some information from other users’ feedbacks on their services.
Such search tools either require fees for getting documents or supply Public Marriage Records Free. There is no pressure on which one you should use because you will be given at least the basic pieces of information, regardless of which tool you choose to use. To initiate a search online, all you need to supply is the full name of either of the couple. It does not matter where you obtain the documents as long as you follow the same rules that govern them. They should not be used in the defamation, harassment, embarrassment, and/or blackmailing other individuals.