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After getting through the wedding planning process and finally exchanging rings, your  significant other and you have finally become a married couple. It is an exciting time in your life. Of that, there is no question. However, you should take a moment to stop and consider something important. Now that your spouse and you are married, there will be occasions when the two of you are asked to prove your marriage. And in these cases, simply showing your rings to the person who is asking may not be enough. Especially when dealing with the government and other important agencies, you will have to provide official documentation that proves that your spouse and you were married and continue to be married in the present. Typically, only one document is accepted to prove your marriage to the most important parties, and that document is known as the marriage certificate. However, there are other documents that also show your partnership is bound. For a list of documents which show both your name and that of your spouse, take a look at the comprehensive list of marriage paperwork that has been provided below for your convenience.

  1. Marriage license: This document was used to allow your spouse and you to get married, and it can also help you prove your union. Featuring your name and your spouse’s name, as well as the seal of the county clerk, no one will question your marriage license as proof of your union when you present it to an interested party.
  2. Marriage certificate: While the license is what is used to give your significant other and you the authority to be married, it is typically the marriage certificate that is used to prove your union. The certificate is the document that is signed and filed by the officiator after the wedding ceremony is complete. Afterwards, the certificate is sent to you so that you may prove your marriage and/or name change (if applicable) when you notify the Social Security Administration and other parties of your recent marriage.
  3. Joint tax return: In the event you do not have your marriage license or your marriage certificate on hand when you need it, last year’s jointly filed tax return does function to prove your marriage. As last year’s tax return shows that you are married and filing your taxes jointly to the Internal Revenue Service, this document does act to prove that the two parties noted on the form are married.
  4. Joint deeds to property: In the event you are your spouse own property together, the deed to this property can work just like a joint tax return. Because it features both of your names – especially if you or your spouse took on the other’s last name – this document can help you prove your marriage.
  5. Personal affidavit for common-law marriage: If you had a common-law marriage in your state of residence, then the affidavit that you used to get married will suffice to prove your union. The document simply must have the names of you and your spouse and the time and place of your wedding.
Licenses.org is a privately owned website that is not affiliated with any government agencies.