How to marry a prisoner

Updated on 6/26/2023

It is safe to say that marriage is no walk in the park, just thinking about it can get you excited but it can be even more stressful when you’re marrying someone in jail and your first question may be, can you marry someone in jail?

Well, I’m happy to tell you that yes you absolutely can but you must know that it’s a completely different process..

married in prison

Steps You Should Take Before Getting Married in Prison

Before getting married in prison, it's crucial to take certain steps to ensure you are well-prepared for the process and have a clear understanding of the legal and logistical requirements involved.

Here are some important steps you should consider:

  1. Research the legal requirements: Start by researching the specific laws and regulations regarding inmate marriages in the jurisdiction of the prison.

    Familiarize yourself with the eligibility criteria, necessary permissions, and any restrictions or limitations that may apply.

  2. Consult with an attorney: Seek advice from a qualified attorney who specializes in inmate marriages. They can provide you with accurate information, guide you through the legal process, and help you understand your rights and responsibilities.

  3. Understand the prison’s policies: Each jail may have its own set of policies and procedures regarding prison weddings.

Contact the prisons administration to obtain detailed information about their requirements, forms, and procedures. Be prepared to comply with any background checks or documentation they may require.

  1. Obtain the necessary permissions: In most cases, you will need to obtain permission from the facility to marry an inmate. This typically involves completing an application or request form. Follow the instructions provided by the prison officials and submit the necessary documentation within the specified timeframe.

  2. Gather required documents: Depending on the jurisdiction, you may need to submit various documents, such as birth certificates, identification documents, divorce decrees (if applicable), and any additional forms or affidavits required for the wedding application. Ensure that you have all the necessary paperwork prepared and organized.

  3. Plan your marriage ceremony: Discuss the options and limitations for wedding day ceremonies within the prison with the prison administration. They can provide information about available venues, scheduling, and any specific rules or restrictions that apply. .

  4. Consider financial implications: Understand the potential financial implications of marrying an inmate. This may include legal fees, fees associated with wedding licenses or applications, costs for phone calls or visits, and any financial support you may be provided to the incarcerated spouse.

Remember, the specific steps and requirements may vary depending on the jurisdiction and the policies of the facility.

It’s crucial to thoroughly research and understand the legal process and seek professional guidance to ensure a smooth and legally valid wedding in prison.

prison calls

What Documents Do You Need for Getting Married to an Inmate?

When marrying an inmate, there are several documents you may need to gather and provide to the relevant authorities.

While the specific requirements can vary depending on the jurisdiction and the policies of the prisons

here are some common files that may be necessary:

  1. Marriage license application: In most cases, you will need to complete a marriage license application. This form typically includes personal information about both parties, such as full names, addresses, dates of birth, and social security numbers.

  2. Identification documents: You and your incarcerated partner will likely need to provide valid identification documents, such as driver’s licenses, passports, or state-issued identification cards.

These documents help establish your identity and ensure that you meet the eligibility criteria for your big day.

  1. Proof of eligibility: Depending on the jurisdiction, you may need to provide proof of eligibility for marriage, such as divorce decrees or death certificates if either party has been previously married. This is to ensure that all legal requirements for the wedding have been met.

  2. Background checks: Some jails may require background checks for individuals seeking to marry inmates. This is done to ensure the safety and security of the facility. You may need to submit consent for a background check and complete any associated forms or paperwork.

  3. Affidavits or witness statements: In certain cases, you may be required to provide affidavits or two witnesses statements attesting to the legitimacy of the marriage or confirming the absence of any legal impediments. These files can serve as additional evidence to support the validity of the wedding.

  4. Correctional facility forms: The specific prisons may have their own set of forms and documentation requirements for inmate marriages. Contact the prison directly to inquire about their specific conditions and procedures.

It’s important to note that the documentation requirements can vary significantly depending on the jurisdiction and the policies of the facility.

It’s essential to reach out to the relevant authorities, such as the prison administration or a qualified attorney, to obtain accurate information about the specific documents you need or rules for getting married to an inmate.

They can guide you through the process and provide you with the necessary forms and instructions to ensure a legally valid wedding.

Planning the Prison Wedding

The key element of marriage is the officiating person. Have someone in your wedding team that will be on hand for your special day. This event will require two witnesses.

Bring two visitors whose age exceeds 18. You’ll also have a valid wedding registration.

It can be requested by the priest in the county in which the marriage is being held.

How to Marry an Inmate in a County Jail

A county jail is where prisoners can usually be incarcerated temporarily while awaiting trial. They typically do not possess adequate facilities to conduct marriage ceremonies. It is therefore important to ask the court for permission for marriage ceremonies at regular court times.

marriage license

A court can refuse a request for judicial review according to the circumstances, available resources in a particular case, and specific circumstances. If a marriage is rejected, you must wait until your spouse is arrested or released.

Is It Always Possible To Get Married in a County Jail?

legally marry

The possibility of a wedding in a county jail can vary depending on the policies and regulations of the specific county jail.

While some county jails may allow marriages to take place within their facilities, others may not have the infrastructure or resources to accommodate wedding ceremonies.

It is best to call the county jail your loved one is located to find out more.

Getting a handle on the legalities:

It is essential to be familiar with the particular laws and regulations governing marriages involving inmates because the procedures and requirements for marriage can differ from state to state.

To get a clear understanding of the procedure, conduct extensive research on the relevant state statutes and think about consulting with lawyers.

Getting in touch with the prisoner:

Laying out and keeping up with open and compelling correspondence with the detainee you wish to wed is fundamental.

Take the time to learn about the restrictions on communication channels, visitation rights, and other forms of contact set by the correctional facility. Throughout the process, it will be essential to cultivate a strong connection and establish trust.

Counseling Legally:

It’s best to consult an attorney because marrying a prisoner can be complicated. Engaging a competent attorney with experience in prisoner rights or family law can provide direction, guarantee compliance with all applicable laws, and address any issues or difficulties that may arise during the process.

Wedding Rings

prison wedding ring

Can you exchange wedding rings in jails or prisons?

Well, it depends on the specific facility and its rules. The policies regarding wedding rings can vary from one correctional institution to another.

Now, let’s get into the details. In some jails or prisons, you may be allowed to exchange wedding rings as part of the marriage ceremony.

However, it’s important to note that these facilities have strict regulations to maintain safety and security. They want to ensure that no items pose a risk or could be used for unauthorized purposes.

To meet the guidelines, wedding rings are typically required to be simple and free from any potential hazards or contraband. They may have specific material or size restrictions. These measures are in place to prioritize the well-being of everyone involved.

Once you have all the information about what is allowed and what is not, it’s time to plan your exchange of wedding rings ceremony. Many couples choose to perform some kind of special ritual when exchanging their rings, such as reading meaningful poems or exchanging heartfelt vows. You can also customize your own rituals that are unique to you and your partner’s


marrying a prisoner requires careful research, compliance with legal requirements, and an understanding of each correctional facility’s policies.

Consulting with an attorney and obtaining the necessary permissions are essential steps in the process. Communication, preparation for lifestyle changes, and commitment to safety regulations are key for a successful marriage.

Regarding wedding rings, specific facility policies should be consulted. It is important to note that this information serves as a general guide and seeking legal advice is recommended for individual circumstances.

Disclaimer: This blog post does not constitute legal advice and is provided solely for informational purposes. To ensure that you are adhering to local laws and regulations, it is recommended that you consult with experts in the field of law and other relevant authorities.