Attorney General Clarifies VA Marriage Law | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Filed Under:

Attorney General Clarifies VA Marriage Law

Play associated audio

By Rebecca Sheir

A couple who obtained a marriage license in Virginia, but held their wedding in Maryland, were told their marriage wasn't valid.

But Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says this marriage law has been in place in the Commonwealth, and across the country, for decades.

The law says if you get your marriage license in Virginia, you must get married in Virginia.

Brian Gottstein, spokesperson for the Attorney General, says the measure has been in place at least since the 1950s.

"It's not a new requirement," he says. "In fact, if you look at the Virginia Department of Health website, it states under 'marriage requirements' that a marriage license issued in Virginia is for marriages to be performed in Virginia only."

Most other states have a similar law on their books. But Gottstein says the Commonwealth has created an exception for Virginians wishing to get married elsewhere.

"Let's say you get your marriage license here, you're a resident of Virginia," he says. "But you want to go to the beach in North Carolina to get married. Well, you can have a ceremony down there as long as you have a brief, legal ceremony here, to solemnize the marriage here in Virginia."

Gottstein emphasizes that marriages licensed and performed outside of Virginia will indeed be recognized in Virginia.

NPR

'Magic Mike XXL' And 'Terminator Genisys' Bring The Testosterone

NPR's Bob Mondello looks at the Independence Day weekend blockbusters, Magic Mike XXL and Terminator Genisys.
NPR

A Dose Of Culinary Medicine Sends Med Students To The Kitchen

Aspiring doctors at the University of Chicago are learning how to teach patients about healthy eating. Nutrition advocates say this kind of training is critical to fighting obesity and diabetes.
NPR

U.S., Cuba To Reopen Embassies In Step Toward Normal Relations

The White House announced Wednesday the opening of a U.S. embassy in Havana, Cuba, which is seen as a key step toward more normal diplomatic ties with the Cold War foe.
NPR

Somebody Is Cutting Internet Cables In California

There have been at least 11 attacks in the San Francisco Bay Area in the past year, according to the FBI. The most recent occurred Tuesday and disrupted service as far north as Seattle.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.