How to Elope in Maine


If the idea of a simple but passionate wedding in a natural setting sounds like a dream come true, then an elopement in Maine might be the perfect option for you. ( See what I did there with the rhyming? )

Join me in a four part series where I share "Why You Should Consider Elopement in Maine", "How to Elope in Maine", "Where to Elope in Maine" and "How to Make your Maine Elopement Special".


How to Elope In Maine

Eloping in Maine is actually pretty simple. Let me break down the most basic details so you can start planning your special day and check another item of your to-do list!

Getting a Marriage License:

For Maine Residents:

Marriage licenses are issued at the town or city level. The couple must visit the town office in person to apply for the marriage license. You may want to check your town's website for information.

  • If both of you are residents of the state of Maine, you should both apply at the town office where at least one of you is a resident. If you are residents of different Maine towns, you both may apply in one town or the other - you do not need to apply separately in each town.

Your marriage license is valid for 90 days and can only be used within the State of Maine. There is no longer a waiting period from the time your marriage license is issued until your wedding can take place. The person performing the ceremony is responsible for filing the marriage certificate with the town office that issued the marriage license.

Requirements

  • Photo ID such as a driver's license may be required.

  • If this is not the first marriage for one of you, bring a certified copy (raised seal) of the divorce from or death certificate of the last spouse.

  • Applicants must be over 18 years old.

  • You may want to check with the municipal clerk where you are filing before-hand to find out what that municipality's policies are.


For non-Maine Residents:

  • If one is from out of state, then both of you should apply in the town where one holds residency.

  • If neither of you is a resident of Maine, then you may apply in any Maine town office. It need not be the same town where you plan to be married.

Your marriage license is valid for 90 days and can only be used within the State of Maine. There is no longer a waiting period from the time your marriage license is issued until your wedding can take place. The person performing the ceremony is responsible for filing the marriage certificate with the town office that issued the marriage license.

Requirements

  • Photo ID such as a driver's license may be required.

  • If this is not the first marriage for one of you, bring a certified copy (raised seal) of the divorce from or death certificate of the last spouse.

  • Applicants must be over 18 years old.

  • You may want to check with the municipal clerk where you are filing before-hand to find out what that municipality's policies are.


Officiants

The following individuals are authorized to perform marriages in Maine:

  • Ordained ministers of the gospel

  • A person licensed to preach by an association of ministers, religious seminary or ecclesiastical body

  • Judges or justices (residents of Maine only)

  • Lawyers admitted to the Maine Bar (residents of Maine only)

  • Maine Notaries - Search for Maine Notaries by Location or Name

Maine does not have Justices of the Peace. Out-of-state Notaries and Justices of the Peace cannot officiate weddings in Maine

Witnesses:

You must have at least 2 witnesses other than the person officiating your wedding present who can sign your license.

Location Permits

An important piece of your check list! Parks, historic properties, and public land may all have different rules on using their land for your elopement. You'll need to research your desired location to ensure you've applied for any appropriate permits before your wedding day. Eloping in Acadia National Park? Learn the details here!.

What if I want it to be just the two of us?

That's cool. Consider a quick marriage at the town office before or after your elopement to make your wedding "official" then enjoy reading your personal vows to each other In the location of your choice.



@2023 by Elizabeth Prybylo.  Wells, Maine