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How many times can you get married in each state?

Published Monday, Dec. 13th, 2021

Is there a limit to how many times you can get married?

“How many times can you get married?” 



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AMM Audio Articles · How many times can you get married in each state?



It might surprise you to learn this question gets Googled a lot. (And we mean a lot!) Thousands of people in the United States alone type some variation of this question into a search engine every month. In fact, maybe that’s how you ended up here, reading this article!


Usually, curious queriers search for information by state… Such as How many times can you get married in Louisiana? or in Texas, or in Illinois, or in Tennessee? 


But no matter which state you search for, the answer will be the same. 


You can get married as many times as you wish to --

as long as you're only married to one person at a time. 


That’s because all US states have laws in place against bigamy and polygamy: you can’t enter into a marriage with more than one person at a time, or be legally married to multiple people at the same time. (This isn’t the same thing as polyamory.) In fact, even wedding officiants can get in legal trouble for performing a bigamist wedding ceremony!


The presence of state laws mean that bigamy and polygamy crimes are’t usually prosecuted at a federal level, but immigrants in polygamist marriages will have difficulty becoming naturalized citizens and may even face deportation. 


Each state makes its own marriage laws. This means that although the right to marriage is protected by the Constitution and federal law for all people, including interracial couples and same-sex couples, each state creates its own rules for how marriages take place.

All states require that one marriage end -- either by legal dissolution, divorce, or the death of a spouse -- before a new one begins. 

All states require that one marriage end before a new one begins. This also means that if you are already married in one state, your marriage is valid in every state, and you won’t be able to start a new marriage in another state until you’ve legally ended the first.


A few states even require a waiting period between the end of one marriage and the start of the next. For example, in Texas, a person can not get remarried to a new spouse if they’ve been divorced within 30 days (although this period can be waived if they’re remarrying the same person they just divorced). And in Nebraska, a divorce takes 6 months to become finalized, meaning a person must wait at least 6 months to remarry. 


No state has a limit on how many times you can get married or remarried in your lifetime, as long as you follow that state’s marriage laws for entering into or ending a marriage. In the United States, you can only be married to one person at a time.


If you want to marry the same person again after divorcing them, you’ll need to apply for a new marriage license


And if you want to hold a second wedding ceremony, to celebrate an existing marriage (to celebrate an important anniversary, for example), this second ceremony is called a vow renewal ceremony, or a sequel wedding ceremony



To summarize: 


  • There’s no limit to how many times an adult can get married in their lifetime
  • You can only be married to one person at a time: One marriage must legally end before another can begin
  • If you’re married in one state, your marriage is valid in all states
  • Some states require a waiting period between the end of one marriage and the start of a new one





To see marriage laws for your state,

including who can solemnize marriage, visit American Marriage Ministries' 


US Marriage Laws Library





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Asked to officiate?  


You only get one shot to deliver a perfect wedding ceremony.



There’s no ‘take-two’ when it comes time for a couple to say ‘I do’--  Wedding officiants only get one shot to perform a perfect wedding ceremony. 








Give yourself the tools and training you deserve to succeed as a wedding officiant, so that you can stand beside the lucky couple with complete confidence on their big day. 








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Jessica Levey
Jessica Levey

Lead Staff Writer & Illustrator

Jessica loves exploring the history and magic of ritual, the connections between people and places, and sharing true stories about love and commitment. She's an advocate for marriage equality, LGBTQ+ rights, and individuality, and is an ordained Minister with AMM. When she’s not writing or illustrating for AMM, she enjoys city hikes, fantasy novels, comics, and traveling.

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