South Bend, Indiana Wedding Guide

Become a Wedding Officiant in South Bend as an AMM Ordained Minister. Learn more about getting ordained in Indiana, officiant training, wedding ceremony planning, and more.

How to Officiate a Wedding in South Bend, Indiana

If you’re planning a classic Midwestern wedding, look no further than The Bend. This quintessential Indiana town is the perfect place to host an affordable (and adorable) wedding, with some of the state’s best venues and a wide variety of catering options right at your fingertips.


But before you get wrapped up in the details of planning your big day, let’s get your legal to-do list taken care of first. Here in our guide, we have everything you need to know about getting your officiant-of-choice ordained, as well as how to complete your marriage license in St. Joseph County. 

Indiana 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. According to St. Joseph County Clerk’s website, any member of the clergy of a religious organization, such as a minister of the gospel, a priest, a bishop, an archbishop or a rabbi may perform a wedding ceremony.

If you do not fall into any of these categories, no sweat. You can get ordained with AMM to fall within the minister category. The process is free and takes just a few minutes.


The Indiana 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!


STEP 2: Prepare for the Ceremony in St. Joseph 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 the marriage license, it’s the couple’s responsibility to obtain it from the circuit court’s office, but just be sure to double check that they have a valid marriage license before you perform the ceremony. After the ceremony, be sure to help them complete it and notarize it correctly. It’s also your job to return the marriage license to the circuit court’s office so that it can be filed. Be sure to do so within 30 days of the wedding.

Indiana Wedding

How To Get Married in South Bend

For The

Now let’s turn our attention to the couple’s responsibilities.


You can start by applying for your marriage license online. It will shorten the time spent in the Clerk's office. Or, you can just apply in person when you make your visit to the Circuit Court Clerk at 101 S Main Street to pick up your marriage license.


When you go, just remember to bring:


  • Valid state-issued ID
  • Payment for the marriage license fee in the form of cash or money order


At the time of the application, the fee is $29 if one or both of the applicants is a resident of the State of Indiana. If both applicants reside out of state and intend to marry in Indiana, the fee is $65 payable at the time you apply.


Once you’ve received your marriage license, you can get married the very same day. Your officiant will help you fill out and notarize it correctly.

St Joseph County Marriage License Info

Important Facts to know before filing for a marriage license in South Bend, Indiana.

Issuance Office: 101 S Main Street, South Bend, IN 46601

Fee: $29-$65 

Waiting Period: None

Expiration: 60 days

Return: By officiant

South Bend Wedding Tips and Tricks

Wedding Venue and Planning Tips

For The Couple
& Officiant

The Basics


Now, we have some wedding planning tips to get the ball rolling on brainstorming the details of your big day. Let’s start with how to choose your wedding date. It’s always a good idea to avoid picking a day of a major festival, game, or charity run if you want to avoid traffic and parking problems. So be sure to check some local events calendars to be sure your venue of choice won’t be kitty-corner to all the commotion before committing to a venue.


Speaking of venues, South Bend has some great options available right in town. Let’s start with one of the most sought after spots, the Palais Royale. The 100-year-old building features 35 foot ceilings, a stunning crystal chandelier, gold leaf embossments and velvet-draped windows, providing the perfect setting for an elegant, Great Gatsby-esque affair.


On the opposite end of the spectrum, you have The Brick -- a modern, simple venue perfect for the couple that wants to create their own aesthetic on their special day. It’s also conveniently located near the center of town, just west of the zoo.


On the east side of the river, you can also find the Morris Park Country Club, which has a stunning recently renovated banquet hall perfect for a large gathering of people. Plus, its grounds make for beautiful wedding photos.


If you’re not quite satisfied with the options in town, remember that your South Bend-issued marriage license is valid anywhere in the state of Indiana, so if you feel like moving the party to Fort Wayne or Indianapolis, you are free to do so.




Getting around South Bend via public transit is a great, inexpensive option if you have the time to kill, but if you want to get around town in a hurry, your best bet is to utilize ridesharing services like Lyft or Uber, which are available in town.




The best time to plan a wedding in Indiana is in the late spring or autumn season, when the temperatures are pleasant, and the skies are clear. Grey cloudy skies start at the end of September and don’t really clear again until late March. South Bend is in the snow belt, so there can be big storms that bring in a lot of heavy snow throughout the winter.

South Bend Officiant FAQ

South Bend Officiant & Couples FAQ

For The Couple
& Officiant

Are Internet ministers legal in Indiana?
Yes, ministers registered through online ministries are perfectly legal in the state of Indiana.


Does the officiant need to register his or her credentials with the state?
No, your officiant-of-choice does not need to register their credentials with any government entity. Once they are ordained, they can officiate your ceremony.


Where should we apply for our marriage license?
If both applicants are Indiana residents and both live in St. Joseph County you must apply in St. Joseph County. If both of you are residents of Indiana but not residents of St Joseph County, you must apply in your county of residence. If both applicants reside out of state, you must apply in the county in which you are getting married.


Can we get married outside of St. Joseph County with our St. Joseph County-issued marriage license?
Yes, you can get married anywhere in the state of Indiana.


Who should return the marriage license?
It’s the officiant’s job to return the completed, notarized marriage license to the circuit court’s office after the ceremony is over.



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