Los Angeles, California Wedding Guide

Become a Wedding Officiant in Los Angeles as an AMM Ordained Minister. Learn more about getting ordained in California, officiant training, wedding ceremony planning, and more.

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How to Officiate a Wedding in Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, California is blessed with the world’s most iconic wedding venues scattered throughout its mountains, beaches, parks, and historic neighborhoods. It is simply... picture perfect. Ordained ministers of American Marriage Ministries have performed thousands of legal marriages in Los Angeles County, and we’re excited to help you officiate your first wedding in the City of Angels. This metropolis truly lives up to its name when it comes to weddings. After all, what could be more heavenly than planning a wedding in the zenith of some of the world’s most sought after venues, florists, caterers, photographers and party planners?


But before you get too wrapped up in planning your dreamy La-La Land wedding, there are some legal to-do’s you and your partner need to check off your list first. At AMM, we’re here to help you get the logistics of your wedding out of the way so that you can focus on deciding between a rooftop reception in Hollywood overlooking L.A.'s twinkling skyline, or saying “I do” at sunset on Redondo Beach.

California Wedding Tips and Tricks

Become a Wedding Officiant

For The
Wedding Officiant

Step 1: Get Ordained with American Marriage Ministries


Let’s start with the ordainment process. Marriage ceremonies in the State of California must be performed by a priest, minister or rabbi of any religious denomination who is 18 years of age or older.


If you’ve been asked to perform a marriage ceremony but you don’t fall within any of these categories, no sweat! Ministers ordained by AMM meet California’s requirements and are legally allowed to perform weddings in the state.


Follow this link to get ordained with AMM. The process is free and takes just a few minutes.


The California government does not license, register, or certify ministers or wedding officiants, so once you’re signed up with us, you’re ready to start performing wedding ceremonies in the state!


Step 2: Prepare for the Ceremony in Los Angeles County


Now that the easy part is out of the way, we can help you prepare for the wedding ceremony itself. Being asked to officiate a ceremony is an honor, but can feel like a lot of pressure. You will appreciate our wedding training pages, which are a library of information to help you prepare for your first ceremony and ensure that it goes smoothly. 


Here you can find everything from sample wedding ceremony scripts, to  brainstorming prompts, tips for preparation, and more.

Step 3: Officiate the Wedding and Complete the Marriage License


When it comes to completing the marriage license, it’s the couple’s responsibility to obtain it from the county clerk’s office, but double check that they have it in their possession before you perform the ceremony. After the ceremony, it’s your job to help them fill it out and notarize it correctly.


The signed marriage license must be returned to the Los Angeles county clerk’s office by the officiant (that’s you!) within 10 days of the ceremony. During COVID-19, you cannot hand deliver the marriage license as the offices are currently closed to the public.


Instead, you’ll need to send the completed marriage license to the county clerk’s office via mail. The specific instructions regarding how to fill it out and return it will be included when the couple files for the marriage license so read the instructions carefully.





Ensure that the completed marriage license is filled out properly and returned to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk (RR/CC).


  1. Ask the couple to present their Marriage License: The couple should have the marriage license with them, as it is their responsibility to apply for and obtain the document from the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk (RR/CC).
  2. Confirm that the Marriage License is valid: All states have different laws governing the window of time during which the marriage license is valid and can be signed. In Los Angeles County, marriage licenses must be issued within 90 days of your ceremony.
  3. Complete and Sign the Marriage License: Once you are satisfied that the marriage license is valid and all the information is presented correctly, complete the fields relevant to you and sign the license along with any required witnesses.
  4. Return the Marriage License to its Issuance Office: The signed marriage license must be returned to the issuing office within ten (10) days. Family Code, Section 359(e), states: “The certificate of registry shall be returned by the person solemnizing the marriage to the county recorder of the county in which the license was issued within 10 days after the ceremony.” The specific instructions regarding how to fill it out and return it will be included when the couple files for the marriage license so read the instructions carefully.

California Wedding

How To Get Married in Los Angeles

For The

Now let’s turn our attention to the couple’s responsibilities. In order to apply for a marriage license, you will first need to make an appointment with the Los Angeles County Clerk's office.


You can start by completing your application online by following this link. At the end of the application process, don’t forget to record your confirmation number, which you will need later on.


Once that’s done, you can book your appointment with the county clerk’s office by following this link


In California, you can get married the same day that you are granted your marriage license. You have 90 days to use your marriage license (i.e. to hold your ceremony) before the license expires. Once your ceremony has been performed, the officiant has 10 days to return the license to the county clerk’s office.

Los Angeles County Marriage License Info

Important Facts to know before filing for a marriage license in Los Angeles, California.

Issuance Office: 11701 S La Cienega Blvd #6
Fee: $91 
Waiting Period: None
Expiration: 90 days
Return: By officiant

Los Angeles Wedding Tips and Tricks

Wedding Venue and Planning Tips

For The Couple
& Officiant

The Basics


Let’s talk about choosing your wedding date. When selecting your big day, make sure to check the city’s events calendars in advance to ensure there are no major activities taking place near your wedding venue of choice. You don’t want to end up fighting traffic on the same day of the Pride Parade.


And speaking of wedding venues, you may find that choosing one is an overwhelming process, as Los Angeles is home to dozens of fabulous wedding venues of all kinds. But the good news is that there is something for everyone.


If you Google “wedding venues in Los Angeles,” the top results will include some fabulous locations, but the price tags may shock you. The average cost of a reception venue in the area is between $5,000 and $10,000 dollars.


If you’re looking for some more affordable options, you may want to check out the James Irvine Japanese Garden, the Orcutt Ranch Horticulture Center, the Smog Shoppe or the Oviatt Penthouse. All of these venues offer affordable pricing in the L.A. area. 


We wish you luck as you begin your search for the perfect venue. And remember, your L.A.-issued marriage license is valid throughout California. So if you find a venue elsewhere in SoCal and fall in love with it, you’re free to use your marriage license at that location.




If you’re from Los Angeles, you already know that getting around by car is the most viable option, as public transportation is limited and slow. But if you find yourself car-less, Lyft and Uber are great options for getting around the L.A. area. 




There’s no doubt about it. L.A. has some of the best weather in the country. On average, the city gets 280 sunny days per year. The most popular time to get married in the area is during the fall, so that’s when venues will have the most limited availability and prices will be at their highest. Spring and summer days are just as beautiful and you may be able to score a better deal if you steer clear of September and October.


Los Angeles Officiant FAQ

Los Angeles Officiant & Couples FAQ

For The Couple
& Officiant

How much does a Los Angeles County Public Marriage License cost?

Marriage licences in Los Angeles cost $91.00 however we recommend that you check with the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk (RR/CC) in case prices have been changed.


Where do I register to perform marriages in California?

In the State of California it unnecessary for persons performing marriages to file their credentials with the clerk of the court or with anyone else. The county and state are removed from any responsibility for verification of credentials.


That means once you are ordained online through American Marriage Ministries, you should probably go ahead and purchase a copy of your ministry ordination credentials from our store, as it is your responsibility to verify that you are ordained. California does not maintain a central registry of members of clergy in the state. Verification is at the discretion of the parties to the marriage.


What authorization do I need to perform a marriage in California?

In Los Angeles California, there is the ordination or investment by the denomination that gives each clergy member the authority to perform the marriage rite, according to the California Department of Public Health. Your online ordination through American Marriage Ministries allows you to assume that legal authority to perform weddings. Family Code, Sections 400-402, are the statutes pertaining to whom can solemnize a marriage in California.


Do I need to review the marriage license before I solemnize the marriage?

Yes. It is the duty of the wedding officiant -- that’s you -- to review the marriage license prior to solemnizing the marriage. According to the California Department of Public Health, “any person who solemnizes a marriage without first reviewing the license is guilty of a misdemeanor (Penal Code, Section 360).” Don’t forget to review and verify that the information is correct to the best of your knowledge.


Can ministers from another state perform a marriage ceremony in California?

Yes. As long as ordained ministers meet the requirements of Family Code, Section 400, out-of-state ministers may perform marriages in Los Angeles and anywhere in the State of California. As an American Marriage Ministry minister, you can perform wedding ceremonies in California, no matter where you are from.


Can an ordained minister perform a marriage ceremony for more than one couple at the same time in California?

Yes. There are no laws in California that prohibit multiple couples from being married at the same time.


Professional Wedding Officiant Certification Course

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Will You Marry Us? Gift Package

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Signature Wedding Officiant Package

Signature Wedding Officiant Package

Our premiere package contains everyting you need to officiate like a pro.

The Book of Wedding Vows and Ceremonies

The Book of Wedding Vows and Ceremonies

It's finally here! Timeless scripts and heartfelt vow inspiration to bring life to your ceremony.

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