May 12, 2020 10:59 PM

Thomas Co. court to issue marriage license with no in-person contact

Posted May 12, 2020 10:59 PM

OJA

TOPEKA—Eight more district courts will resume issuing marriage licenses using a process that doesn't require in-person contact, according to a news release from the Office of Judicial Administration (OJA).

District courts in Barton, Leavenworth, Lyon, Miami, Pawnee, Reno, Saline and Thomas counties will begin processing new marriage license applications starting Wednesday, May 13.

Applicants must call a court to begin the process.

Ten courts have been processing marriage licenses using this new process since April 20.

Courts that will issue marriage licenses

People who live in Johnson, Sedgwick, Shawnee, or Wyandotte county will get their marriage licenses through the district court in their county:

  1. Johnson County District Court — Olathe — 913-715-3428
  2. Sedgwick County District Court — Wichita — 316-660-5900
  3. Shawnee County District Court — Topeka — 785-251-6362
  4. Wyandotte County District Court — Kansas City — 913-573-2834

People who live in other counties will now be able to choose from 14 court locations to get a marriage license:

  1. Barton County District Court — Great Bend — 620-793-1856
  2. Crawford County District Court — Pittsburg — 620-231-0380
  3. Douglas County District Court — Lawrence — 785-832-5256
  4. Ellis County District Court — Hays — 785-628-9415
  5. Finney County District Court — Garden City — 620-271-6120
  6. Ford County District Court — Dodge City — 620-227-4609
  7. Harvey County District Court — Newton — 316-284-6890
  8. Leavenworth County District Court — Leavenworth — 913-684-0700
  9. Lyon County District Court — Emporia — 620-341-3280
  10. Miami County District Court — Paola — 913-294-3326
  11. Pawnee County District Court — Larned — 620-285-6937
  12. Reno County District Court — Hutchinson — 620-694-2956
  13. Saline County District Court — Salina — 785-309-5831
  14. Thomas County District Court — Colby — 785-460-4540

Courts will receive applications by encrypted email or mail

Marriage license paperwork requires the applicant to provide a photo identification that includes personally identifiable information, such as date of birth, Social Security number, or driver’s license number. To protect this information, courts will begin an encrypted email exchange with the applicant through which the applicant will return completed paperwork.

If an applicant does not have email, courts will also send and receive paperwork by U.S. mail.

Fulfilling the oath requirement

Marriage license applicants previously were required to appear in person in the clerk of court’s office to swear an oath that includes affirming:

  1. they are of lawful age to marry or have necessary consent to marry;
  2. are not related in degrees prohibited by law; and
  3. no legal reason exists why they should not marry.

Under the new process, applicants will make this affirmation on paper.

Prior marriage license applications will not be processed

If a person submitted a marriage license application before courts closed to in-person contact on March 18, and the marriage license was not issued, the person will need to submit a new application to a court issuing marriage licenses using this new process. This applies even if the earlier application was submitted to a court that will now issue marriage licenses, and it is to ensure all requirements are met. 

State courts slowly expanding operations 

On May 1 the chief justice issued six new administrative orders to provide updated direction to state courts and court users as the state slowly reopens following a plan outlined by the governor April 30.

Under these orders, courts will gradually increase the number and types of service delivered to the people of Kansas.

State courts have been operating in a limited capacity since March 18 under earlier Supreme Court orders issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Courts initially were restricted to only essential functions, but they were later permitted to perform additional functions to the extent local resources and circumstances allowed.

For a complete list of judicial branch actions in response to the novel coronavirus, visit Kansas Courts Response to COVID-19.