Perspective: Atlantic County Clerk
This month, since it’s the beginning of spring, I want to discuss weddings and how the county clerk can be of assistance. I will begin by saying that by title the county clerk is allowed to perform marriages (Title 37:1-13). The marriage must be performed within the State of New Jersey. The process begins with a couple that wants to be married. The marriage or civil license must be obtained from the registrar in the New Jersey municipality in which either applicant resides, if one or both is a resident of New Jersey.
A license under the preceding circumstances is good for use anywhere in the State of New Jersey. If both parties are not residents of New Jersey the license must be obtained from the municipality where the ceremony is to be preformed and is only good for use in that municipality.
A New Jersey marriage or civil union license may never be used outside the State of New Jersey and a license issued in another state may never be used within the State of New Jersey. A local registrar will not issue a marriage or civil license sooner than 72 hours after the application for a license has been made, unless ordered to do so via a Superior Court order. The cost of the license is $28. When applying, you will need proof of identity, proof of residency, your social security number and two witnesses 18 years of age or older.
Once the license is issued, it is only good for 30 days. Once a couple picks a date they can contact the County Clerk’s office at (609) 625-7000 and speak with Jen Berenato and begin the process. Upon contacting the office the above process of obtaining a license will be fully explained. Then the time, date and location can be discussed.
As the county clerk I am very much open to whatever the couple wishes. Once the above is in place, Berenato reviews with the couple all of the details associated with the ceremony. I am excited to say that since the announcement of the county clerk performing marriages; it’s been a busy and exciting time for the clerk’s office. Several weddings have been preformed within the clerk’s office in Mays Landing. As of now we are booking weddings into September and beyond. There is no charge on the part of the Atlantic County Clerk to perform a wedding.
Once the wedding is complete the county clerk files the necessary paperwork with the registrar within the municipality in which the wedding or civil union took place within a five-day period. The couple can then obtain a certified copy from the municipality where the ceremony took place or from the State of New Jersey Office of Vital Statistics and Registry. As always if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at the clerk’s office at (609) 625-7000.
Joseph J. Giralo
Atlantic County Clerk