Marriage License

Prior to a marriage ceremony in Iowa, you are required to obtain a License to Marry from a local County Registrar/Recorder

  1. Marriages in Iowa are between two people who are (1) 18 years of age and older; (2) not already or still legally married to someone else or each other; (3) not closely related by blood or first cousins; and (4) legally competent to enter into a civil contract.
  2. To apply for a marriage license the couple intending to marry and one witness (someone that is acquainted with the couple and is 18 years of age or older) must come into the office and fill out the application (or complete, have notarized, and mail back to us the completed application with fee - see below).  The applicants and witness must all present a current government issued photo I.D. for notarization.  The fee is $35.00 (Webster County does not accept personal checks for Vital Records).  Once the license has been applied for, there will be a 3 business day wait.  The couple will need to come back in after the 3 day wait to obtain the marriage packet.  To obtain a 3-day waiver, there is an additional fee of $5.00, and it must be signed by a District Judge within the same judicial district as the county in which you wish your license issued.
  3. Minors:  Persons aged 16 and 17 may only marry with special permission from a judge and should request a "Consent for Minor to Marry" form when making application for their marriage license .  Complete the form and present it to a judge within the same judicial district as the county in which you wish your license issued.  The Clerk of District Court office can provide additional information.  Return the signed form in order to complete the marriage application process.
Marriage license applications may be submitted to our office by mail.  The application must be complete, notarized and include the $35.00 fee by Money Order, Certified Cashier's Check, or cash (No Personal Checks) and made payable to the Webster County Recorder.  Please include an address and phone number along with application and payment.  The marriage packet will be available for pick up 3 business days after being processed by our office.  Packets can be mailed back to the address provided upon by written request.

The application form for a marriage license in Iowa, including detailed instructions for completing the application, may be viewed and/or downloaded by clicking these links: Download Marriage License Application and Instructions
What Officiants need to know to solemnize a marriage

Magistrate Marriages

To set up an appointment with a magistrate for your wedding ceremony:
Call: 515-573-1439
Monday through Friday
Between 8:00 am and 12:00 noon ONLY (try to avoid 9:00 am to 10:00 am)

Magistrate weddings will be held at the Webster County Law Enforcement Center,
702 1st Avenue South, 2nd Floor, Courtroom #2, Fort Dodge Iowa 50501

The three magistrates in Webster County:
Magistrate Stephen Kersten
Magistrate William Habhab
Magistrate Sarah Livingston

Magistrates are available during nonduty hours and at other locations for a fee.