741.01 County court judge or clerk of the circuit court to issue marriage license; fee.—
(1) Every marriage license shall be issued by a county court judge or clerk of the circuit court under his or her hand and seal. The county court judge or clerk of the circuit court shall issue such license, upon application for the license, if there appears to be no impediment to the marriage. The county court judge or clerk of the circuit court shall collect and receive a fee of $2 for receiving the application for the issuance of a marriage license.
(2) The fee charged for each marriage license issued in the state shall be increased by the sum of $25. This fee shall be collected upon receipt of the application for the issuance of a marriage license and remitted by the clerk to the Department of Revenue for deposit in the Domestic Violence Trust Fund. The Executive Office of the Governor shall establish a Domestic Violence Trust Fund for the purpose of collecting and disbursing funds generated from the increase in the marriage license fee. Such funds which are generated shall be directed to the Department of Children and Family Services for the specific purpose of funding domestic violence centers, and the funds shall be appropriated in a “grants-in-aid” category to the Department of Children and Family Services for the purpose of funding domestic violence centers. From the proceeds of the surcharge deposited into the Domestic Violence Trust Fund as required under s. 938.08, the Executive Office of the Governor may spend up to $500,000 each year for the purpose of administering a statewide public-awareness campaign regarding domestic violence.
(3) Further, the fee charged for each marriage license issued in the state shall be increased by an additional sum of $7.50 to be collected upon receipt of the application for the issuance of a marriage license. The clerk shall transfer such funds monthly to the Department of Revenue for deposit in the Displaced Homemaker Trust Fund created in s. 446.50.
(4) An additional fee of $25 shall be paid to the clerk upon receipt of the application for issuance of a marriage license. The moneys collected shall be remitted by the clerk to the Department of Revenue, monthly, for deposit in the General Revenue Fund.
(5) The fee charged for each marriage license issued in the state shall be reduced by a sum of $32.50 for all couples who present valid certificates of completion of a premarital preparation course from a qualified course provider registered under s. 741.0305(5) for a course taken no more than 1 year prior to the date of application for a marriage license. For each license issued that is subject to the fee reduction of this subsection, the clerk is not required to transfer the sum of $7.50 to the Department of Revenue for deposit in the Displaced Homemaker Trust Fund pursuant to subsection (3) or to transfer the sum of $25 to the Department of Revenue for deposit in the General Revenue Fund.
History.–s. 2, Nov. 2, 1829; s. 2, ch. 3720, 1887; s. 1, ch. 3890, 1889; RS 2055; GS 2574; RGS 3933; CGL 5848; s. 28, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 74-3; s. 1, ch. 74-372; s. 8, ch. 78-281; s. 143, ch. 79-190; s. 7, ch. 79-402; s. 3, ch. 82-135; s. 3, ch. 82-192; s. 9, ch. 84-343; s. 50, ch. 86-220; s. 3, ch. 86-264; s. 3, ch. 88-181; s. 1, ch. 91-240; s. 2, ch. 94-222; s. 53, ch. 96-418; s. 1779, ch. 97-102; s. 4, ch. 98-403; s. 80, ch. 99-3; s. 278, ch. 99-8; s. 7, ch. 99-243; s. 7, ch. 2001-50; s. 17, ch. 2001-122; s. 4, ch. 2004-251; s. 75, ch. 2004-265.
741.011 Installment payments.–An applicant for a marriage license who is unable to pay the fees required under s. 741.01 in a lump sum may make payment in not more than three installments over a period of 90 days. The clerk shall accept installment payments upon receipt of an affidavit that the applicant is unable to pay the fees in a lump-sum payment. Upon receipt of the third or final installment payment, the marriage license application shall be deemed filed, and the clerk shall issue the marriage license to the applicant and distribute the fees as provided in s. 741.01. In the event that the marriage license fee is paid in installments, the clerk shall retain $1 from the additional fee imposed pursuant to s. 741.01(4), as a processing fee.
History.–s. 3, ch. 94-222.
741.02 Additional fee.–Upon the receipt of each application for the issuance of a marriage license, the county court judge or clerk of the circuit court shall, in addition to the fee allowed by s. 741.01, collect and receive an additional fee of $4, to be distributed as provided by s. 382.022.
History.–s. 1, ch. 11869, 1927; CGL 5851; s. 7, ch. 22000, 1943; s. 1, ch. 67-520; s. 28, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 74-372; s. 31, ch. 87-387; s. 6, ch. 88-98.
741.03 County court judge or clerk of the circuit court not to send out marriage license signed in blank.–It is unlawful for any county court judge or clerk of the circuit court in the state to send out of his or her office any marriage license signed in blank to be issued upon application to persons not in the office of the county court judge or clerk of the circuit court.
History.–s. 1, ch. 7828, 1919; CGL 5849; s. 28, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 74-372; s. 1056, ch. 97-102.
741.0305 Marriage fee reduction for completion of premarital preparation course.—
(1) A man and a woman who intend to apply for a marriage license under s. 741.04 may, together or separately, complete a premarital preparation course of not less than 4 hours. Each individual shall verify completion of the course by filing with the application a valid certificate of completion from the course provider, which certificate shall specify whether the course was completed by personal instruction, videotape instruction, instruction via other electronic medium, or a combination of those methods. All individuals who complete a premarital preparation course pursuant to this section must be issued a certificate of completion at the conclusion of the course by their course provider. Upon furnishing such certificate when applying for a marriage license, the individuals shall have their marriage license fee reduced by $32.50.
(2) The premarital preparation course may include instruction regarding:
(a) Conflict management.
(b) Communication skills.
(c) Financial responsibilities.
(d) Children and parenting responsibilities.
(e) Data compiled from available information relating to problems reported by married couples who seek marital or individual counseling.
(3)(a) All individuals electing to participate in a premarital preparation course shall choose from the following list of qualified instructors:
1. A psychologist licensed under chapter 490.
2. A clinical social worker licensed under chapter 491.
3. A marriage and family therapist licensed under chapter 491.
4. A mental health counselor licensed under chapter 491.
5. An official representative of a religious institution which is recognized under s. 496.404(19), if the representative has relevant training.
6. Any other provider designated by a judicial circuit, including, but not limited to, school counselors who are certified to offer such courses. Each judicial circuit may establish a roster of area course providers, including those who offer the course on a sliding fee scale or for free.
(b) The costs of such premarital preparation course shall be paid by the applicant.
(4) Each premarital preparation course provider shall furnish each participant who completes the course with a certificate of completion specifying the name of the participant and the date of completion and whether the course was conducted by personal instruction, videotape instruction, or instruction via other electronic medium, or by a combination of these methods.
(5) All area course providers shall register with the clerk of the circuit court by filing an affidavit in writing attesting to the provider’s compliance with the premarital preparation course requirements as set forth in this section and including the course instructor’s name and qualifications, including the license number, if any, or, if an official representative of a religious institution, a statement as to relevant training. The affidavit shall also include the addresses where the provider may be contacted.
History.–s. 5, ch. 98-403; s. 16, ch. 99-307.
741.03055 Review of premarital preparation courses; pilot programs; questionnaire and curriculum.—
(1) Premarital preparation courses offered and completed by individuals across the state shall be reviewed by researchers from the Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family in order to determine the efficacy of such premarital preparation courses.
(2) Premarital preparation pilot programs may be created by the Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family, which will be administered by course providers or by qualified instructors as provided in s. 741.0305(3). These pilot programs shall offer a premarital preparation course based on statistical information and data obtained by researchers from the Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family.
(3) The Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family shall develop a questionnaire and create a curriculum based on data collected by its researchers. Any curriculum developed by the Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family researchers shall be the sole property of the center.
History.–s. 6, ch. 98-403.
741.03056 Informational questionnaire.–When applying for a marriage license, an applicant may complete and file with the clerk of the circuit court an unsigned anonymous informational questionnaire which shall be provided by the clerk. The clerk shall, for purposes of anonymity, keep all such questionnaires in a separate file for later distribution by the clerk to researchers from the Florida State University Center for Marriage and Family. These questionnaires must be made available to researchers from the center at their request. Researchers from the center shall develop the questionnaire and distribute them to the clerk of the circuit court in each county.
History.–s. 9, ch. 98-403.
741.0306 Creation of a family law handbook.—
(1) Based upon their willingness to undertake this project, there shall be created by the Family Law Section of The Florida Bar a handbook explaining those sections of Florida law pertaining to the rights and responsibilities under Florida law of marital partners to each other and to their children, both during a marriage and upon dissolution. The material in the handbook or other suitable electronic media shall be reviewed for accuracy by the Family Court Steering Committee of the Florida Supreme Court prior to publication and distribution.
(2) Such handbooks shall be available from the clerk of the circuit court upon application for a marriage license. The clerks may also make the information in the handbook available on videotape or other electronic media and are encouraged to provide a list of course providers and sites at which marriage and relationship skill-building classes are available.
(3) The information contained in the handbook or other electronic media presentation may be reviewed and updated annually, and may include, but need not be limited to:
(a) Prenuptial agreements; as a contract and as an opportunity to structure financial arrangements and other aspects of the marital relationship.
(b) Shared parental responsibility for children; the determination of primary residence or custody and secondary residence or routine visitation, holiday, summer, and vacation visitation arrangements, telephone access, and the process for notice for changes.
(c) Permanent relocation restrictions on parents with primary residential responsibility.
(d) Child support for minor children; both parents are obligated for support in accordance with applicable child support guidelines.
(e) Property rights, including equitable distribution, special equity, premarital property, and nonmarital property.
(f) Alimony, including temporary, permanent rehabilitative, and lump sum.
(g) Domestic violence and child abuse and neglect, including penalties and other ramifications of false reporting.
(h) Court process for dissolution with or without legal assistance, including who may attend, the recording of proceedings, how to access those records, and the cost of such access.
(i) Parent education course requirements for divorcing parents with children.
(j) Community resources that are available for separating or divorcing persons and their children.
(k) Women’s rights specified in the Battered Women’s Bill of Rights.
(4) The material contained in such a handbook may also be provided through videotape or other suitable electronic media. The information contained in the handbook or other electronic media presentation shall be reviewed and updated annually.
History.–s. 7, ch. 98-403.
741.04 Marriage license issued.—
(1) No county court judge or clerk of the circuit court in this state shall issue a license for the marriage of any person unless there shall be first presented and filed with him or her an affidavit in writing, signed by both parties to the marriage, providing the social security numbers or any other available identification numbers of each party, made and subscribed before some person authorized by law to administer an oath, reciting the true and correct ages of such parties; unless both such parties shall be over the age of 18 years, except as provided in s. 741.0405; and unless one party is a male and the other party is a female. Pursuant to the federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, each party is required to provide his or her social security number in accordance with this section. The state has a compelling interest in promoting not only marriage but also responsible parenting, which may include the payment of child support. Any person who has been issued a social security number shall provide that number. Disclosure of social security numbers or other identification numbers obtained through this requirement shall be limited to the purpose of administration of the Title IV-D program for child support enforcement. Any person who is not a citizen of the United States may provide either a social security number or an alien registration number if one has been issued by the United States Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Any person who is not a citizen of the United States and who has not been issued a social security number or an alien registration number is encouraged to provide another form of identification. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to mean that a county court judge or clerk of the circuit court in this state shall not issue a marriage license to individuals who are not citizens of the United States if one or both of the parties are unable to provide a social security number, alien registration number, or other identification number.
(2) No county court judge or clerk of the circuit court in this state shall issue a license for the marriage of any person unless there shall be first presented and filed with him or her:
(a) A statement in writing, signed by both parties, which specifies whether the parties, separately or together, have completed a premarital preparation course.
(b) A statement that verifies that both parties have obtained and read or otherwise accessed the information contained in the handbook or other electronic media presentation of the rights and responsibilities of parties to a marriage specified in s. 741.0306.
(3) If a couple has not submitted to the clerk valid certificates of completion of a premarital preparation course, the effective date of the marriage license shall be delayed 3 days from the date of application. The effective date shall be printed on the marriage license in bold print. If a couple has submitted valid certificates of completion of a premarital preparation course, the effective date of the marriage license shall not be delayed. Exceptions to the delayed effective date must be granted to non-Florida residents seeking a marriage license from the state and for individuals asserting hardship. Marriage license fee waivers shall continue to be available to all eligible individuals. For state residents, a county court judge issuing a marriage license may waive the delayed effective date for good cause.
History.–s. 2, Nov. 2, 1829; s. 2, ch. 3720, 1887; s. 1, ch. 3890, 1889; RS 2055; GS 2574; s. 2, ch. 7828, 1919; RGS 3933; CGL 5850; s. 1, ch. 22643, 1945; s. 1, ch. 28103, 1953; s. 28, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 74-372; s. 1, ch. 77-19; s. 64, ch. 77-121; s. 1, ch. 77-139; s. 1, ch. 78-266; s. 8, ch. 83-230; s. 1057, ch. 97-102; s. 67, ch. 97-170; s. 38, ch. 98-397; s. 8, ch. 98-403; s. 18, ch. 99-375; s. 152, ch. 2004-5.