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Alabama’s new approach to marriage licenses begins August 29

(WZDX)- If you plan to get married in Alabama, listen up!

Starting August 29th, couples will no longer need to get a license or have a ceremony to be married.

In 2015, the Supreme Court ruled same-sex couples have the right to be married anywhere in the U.S. Many county probate judges in Alabama responded by not issuing marriage licenses at all.

This new law requires probate judges to record and file each marriage.

“Regardless of what your position on same sex marriage is, the officials have a job to do, and if the higher court says, ‘You gotta do it, whether you agree with it or not, you gotta do it.’ And so, now somebody realized, ‘Hey, wait a minute.’ If we just take away this requirement, then, you know, this controversial issue is not a controversial issue, because there is no… That statute doesn’t give any authority for anybody to make a decision. If I check every box, I’m in,” said attorney Jeremiah Hodges.

In order to be officially married, there are still steps that must be taken.

Couples fill out a “marriage certificate form”– which will be on the probate judge’s website by August 28. Take the form to a notary to witness the signatures. Then, give the notarized form  to the probate office which then must be recorded within thirty days of signing the form.

Hodges added, “Essentially, what you’re doing is changing the issue from a circumstance where I’ve gotta go to the county and request a marriage license more to I present my affidavit in compliance with the statute and I’m literally informing the probate judge and effectively the state, this is what I’ve done, and so long as I meet the certain criteria, I don’t have to have to ask anybody’s permission.”