If you live in Michigan, you must apply in the county where you reside. You may apply in either county if both parties are Michigan citizens. If both parties are from out-of-state, you must apply in the county where you intend to marry. The license is only valid in that county. You cannot travel to another county to marry your partner.
You can only be married in a civil ceremony in Michigan. A religious ceremony is not required by law but is allowed at many churches across the state. Civil ceremonies are conducted by licensed officials called "ministers of religion". They can be ordained priests or ministers from other religions who have been granted ministerial licenses by the State Board of Rabbis.
Ministers of religion are required to follow certain guidelines when conducting weddings. For example, they must allow at least one witness per couple. The wedding must take place in the county where the license is issued and be reported back to the licensing authority within two weeks of the marriage taking place.
What if you divorce in one county but then move to another? You can still get married in Michigan as long as you file the divorce petition in the county where you lived with your spouse. If you do not, then upon death your marital status will be left unresolved.
No, you do not need to get your marriage license in the county where you are getting married. However, your marriage license is only valid in that county.
To marry in Michigan, couples must apply in person to the County Clerk of the county in which each applicant resides with a valid driver's license or state I.D. to acquire a marriage license. After the application, there is a three-day waiting time before the license may be issued and utilized. The couple must appear in court where a judge will review their completed application form and issue them a license.
Marriage licenses are required by state law in order for couples to be declared legally married. However, since states have the power to decide what role they want to play in marriage, some choose to offer simple administrative procedures while others require more formal legal processes. For example, some states allow marriages by default on being filed as "married under laws of this state" in the appropriate records while others require that applicants appear in court and be adjudged married by a judge. Regardless, every state requires some form of authorization from the government to enter into a marriage contract.
In 2014, Maryland became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage by popular vote. Since then, another 14 states have passed similar measures at the ballot box while four other states have legalized gay marriage through legislative action. Of the remaining states that have not legalized same-sex marriage, two (West Virginia and Alabama) had their bans on such marriages ruled unconstitutional by federal courts while the remaining 30 still have bans on gay marriage or similar legislation pending in their legislatures.
If you're getting married in Michigan, you must first apply for a wedding license at any county clerk's office in the state. These offices, which are also referred to as "marriage license bureaus," are typically housed in the county probate court or circuit court. You must provide your full name as it appears on both passports (if either one of you has another name besides his/her birth name, you will need to provide evidence of the change of name), date of birth, residence address, and marital status (whether single or married). You can download a marriage license application online or fill out a paper version and mail it in. If you fail to appear in person at your county clerk's office within two weeks of receiving notice from them that your license has been issued, they will issue a rescheduled license upon receipt of the required payment.
You should plan to be married at a time and place that is convenient for you and your spouse. If you want your marriage to be considered legal in all 50 states, then you should get married in a location where marriage licenses are issued. You cannot be married outside of Michigan without having an official license. Your pastor may be able to help with arrangements for your wedding ceremony. He/she could choose to conduct part of the service with you and your partner present and part of it with only members of the congregation joining you during a special momento.