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Most recent posting below. See other articles in the column to the right.

Forming Civil Unions in New Jersey

Same-sex couples can legally form "civil unions" as of February 19, 2007. All couples in New Jersey must follow the procedures for getting a New Jersey marriage license, and anyone who can officiate an opposite-sex marriage can officiate a same-sex marriage.

Before going to the municipal clerk, remember:

Some municipalities require you to make an appointment for an application--call ahead! You must follow the same procedures for a marriage license: double-check that you have everything you need. Many couples overlook an item on the checklist and are turned away. Don't forget your witness!

File for the license in the municipality where you LIVE if you live in New Jersey (the rule is: file in the municipality where the bride lives, or in the municipality where the groom lives if the bride lives out of state; if both parties live out of state, then you file in the municipality where the ceremony is to take place). No blood tests are required in New Jersey! One less appointment you need to make!

You need to provide the NAME and ADDRESS of your OFFICIANT when you apply for your license.

From the New Jersey Department of Health and Social Services website:

What should you bring with you, when you apply for your marriage license:

  • If you are divorced or have had your marriage annulled, bring the divorce decree or the civil annulment documents.
  • Death certificate, if your former spouse is deceased.
  • A copy of your birth certificate, drivers license, passport or state I.D. (Double check that your birth certificate has a raised seal and that it contains your parents, names.)
  • Proof of your residency.
  • Your social security card or social security number, as per NJSA 37:1-17.
  • A witness (18 years or older) who knows both the applicants.
  • A $28.00 fee.

Check out "How To Apply For A Civil Union License" on the New Jersey State web site from the department of Health & Senior Services, Vital Statistics.

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