Online marriages are getting popular, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis that has led to the implementation of safety protocols and travel restrictions, which in turn have kept some couples apart. If you and your special someone are miles or even countries away from one another, you might want to consider this option. But before you do, it’s important to keep yourself abreast with all the important things you need to know about online marriages.
The Legality Of Online Marriages
Online or virtual marriages are legal in certain states under US marriage laws. This type of marriage setup is government-recognized, and the couple receives a US marriage certificate that bears the US government stamp through the mail.
Online marriages follow the same process and certification applicable to in-person weddings. A state officiant conducts the wedding ceremony via an online video conferencing platform. It’s crucial to choose an online wedding service provider with an established working relationship with states allowing online marriage to make the process a lot easier. With their help, you can get the same result that a physical wedding delivers.
How Online Marriage Works
Due to the advancement of digital technology, carrying out wedding ceremonies online is now possible. Here’s how you can go about yours:
- Fill out a form on the virtual wedding website of your choice and upload copies of required documents, such as your passport.
- Select your preferred wedding date and type of ceremony.
- You don’t have to worry about the marriage registration because the organizer will take care of it for you and your partner.
- You’ll receive the wedding details with a video sharing link you can then send to your guests so they can be in attendance as well.
Reputable online wedding platforms offer flexible modes of payment and a secure payment process. The fee would depend on the scope of services you want, so if you have a limited budget, you can go for the simplest option available.
Benefits Of Online Marriage
Whether your bride or groom is in another part of the world, nothing should stop you from getting married despite the current travel restrictions. Providers of online marriage services can arrange everything you need so you can have an unforgettable, enjoyable, and meaningful wedding.
Online marriage comes with many advantages, including the following:
- Convenience: With a virtual wedding ceremony, you don’t have to meet with different people to organize the ceremony. Additionally, it eliminates the need for you, your partner, and your guests to travel to a particular wedding venue that may not be easily accessible to all.
- No Bureaucracy: You probably already have an idea of the stress and frustration that preparing for a traditional wedding entails. By considering online marriage, you don’t need to worry about processing documents and other similar details because everything will be handled for you.
- Get To Enjoy A Full Wedding Event: Just like in a traditional wedding, you can still hold exciting games, dance, and sing together during an online marriage. A full wedding includes a virtual lounge, a legal marriage ceremony, and a private host.
- Legality: As mentioned, online marriages are now accepted in certain states by the US government.
States Allowing Online Marriage
Right now, online marriages can be done in only a few US states, and each of them has their own inclusions and limitations. Here are the details:
In Illinois, couples can file an application to get their marriage license through video conferencing, and officiants can conduct marriage ceremonies online. On May 1, 2020, the governor of Illinois issued an order giving couples the right to file for a marriage license and have wedding ceremonies via video conference. The officiant should have live online interaction with the wedding couple using two-way audio-video communication technology.
⇒ New Jersey
Couples can get married online via a video conferencing platform in New Jersey. Effective May 4, 2020, in-person requirements for marriage licenses and ceremonies were suspended. The waiting period of 72 hours between marriage application and issuance was also suspended.
⇒ New York
In New York, couples can have a virtual wedding conducted by the Non-City Clerk’s Office Marriage Officiants.
Couples in Utah can obtain their marriage license remotely, and officiants can solemnize marriage through video conferencing. Real-time online wedding ceremonies are now allowed in the state. The couple, two adult witnesses, and the officiant must attend the virtual ceremony even if all of them are in different locations.
In Hawaii, couples can process their marriage license and marry online. Governor David Ige of Hawaii issued an executive order that temporarily allows officiating of wedding ceremonies via video conference while the state’s emergency order is still in effect.
Virtual Wedding Packages
Given the convenience they offer, it’s likely that virtual weddings are here to stay, and they’re bound to spread worldwide quickly. Online wedding organizers offer various wedding packages, from a humble wedding ceremony to a full wedding event, to cater to the preferences of more couples.
You and your partner have the chance to exchange vows and rings in a wedding ceremony that’s at least 30 minutes long. You can invite up to a certain number of guests, too. The wedding can begin in a virtual lounge, with a professional host to entertain your guests. In addition, you can plan exciting digital games to incorporate fun and excitement into your special day.
Online Wedding Preparation
Like with a traditional wedding, you also need to prepare yourself for your big day. Follow these online marriage preparation tips for a more enjoyable and memorable experience:
Book Early: Because of the popularity of online weddings, it’s advisable to book early so you can get everything ready at a comfortable pace. Booking early will allow you to choose the perfect date for your wedding and give you enough time to look for your and your partner’s wedding attire and other personal needs.
Discuss Your Options: If you want to get married without the frills, a simple online wedding is a great option, and it’ll save you more money you can then use for other important matters. But of course, if you want the feel of a traditional ceremony, go for a full wedding event. Anyway, this is still far less costly than an in-person wedding.
Prepare Yourself And Your Loved Ones: Since everything is done digitally, you need to set your expectations regarding this new wedding setup. Keep in mind that there are some aspects of in-person weddings that may not be feasible with online marriages, so see to it that you fully understand what you’ll be getting out of the experience. It’s also important to explain how online marriage works to older family members to clear any doubts and address their concerns.
Online marriages are now US government-recognized, helping couples seal their love regardless of their location, nationality, and sexuality. If you’re considering getting married online, you can speak with a trusted provider of online wedding services to ensure that everything goes according to plan.