We will provide Wedding Officiant services for weddings when the bride or groom is incarcerated in Theo Lacy Detention Facility in Orange, Men's Central in Santa Ana, Women's Central, or Musick (with permission). The Santa Ana City Jail does not allow weddings to take place.
We will officiate your wedding at an Orange County jail or prison for a flat fee of $250. A jailhouse wedding can easily take 4 or more hours of our time, between waiting in line at the County Recorder with the bride to take an oath, and waiting through the visiting lines at the jail and performing the ceremony.
Here are the requirements for Orange County:
Read these requirements carefully, and follow them to the letter!
The marriage license applicant who is able to appear before the County
Clerk-Recorder must obtain an "Inability to Appear" form from the Orange County
Clerk-Recorder Department and have it notarized by a Notary Public who visits
the prisoner at the jail. This "Inability to Appear" form
must be signed by the prisoner in front of a
notary. This form is not published on the County Clerk's web-site,
HERE to get a .pdf copy of the Inability To Appear paperwork.
The notary can NOT be the same person as the officiant. A Notary Public with security clearance can visit the prisoner during the same hours as the attorneys. A regular Notary who does not have security clearance may visit the prisoner with you on the weekend as a regular visitor.
If you need a notary at the prisons, there
is a notary located in Santa Ana named Gaston Roberti who is willing to go into the
jails for a resonable fee. As of July, 2013, he charges just $55 to visit
the jails Monday-Thursday, and $75 to visit the jails on a Friday. His cell phone is
and his email is:
You MUST have
a current drivers license or passport or government issued photo identification for the prisoner,
or the County Clerk will not give you a
marriage license. If you aren't
sure that you have acceptable identification for the prisoner, you should go to
the marriage license office and show the clerk what identification you have, to
see if it is acceptable, before you spend money on a Notary, or your wedding
The applicant (Bride or Groom) must appear at the County Clerk-Recorder Department (in the Old Courthouse in Santa Ana, on the corner of Broadway and Civic Center) to obtain the marriage license. Your minister, the person "solemnizing the ceremony" (that's us) MUST ACCOMPANY YOU. Original Government Issued Photo I.D. for both the bride and groom are required (no exceptions), along with proof that the person is currently incarcerated - a receipt from the jail works fine.
IF your fiance is in Immigration Holding, he must
get permission from that department prior to getting married.
Here's a check list for when you go to pick up your marriage license:
Before you go to pick up your marriage license, fill out the on-line application form for a CONFIDENTIAL MARRIAGE LICENSE on the County Clerk's web-site HERE. To get a confidential license, you must state that the two of you have been living together at the same address. Don't get a public license, because a witness will not be allowed to go with you on your prisoner visit.
Meet your Officiant on the FRONT steps to the old court house, or in the computer room at the Marriage License office. The front of the court house faces Santa Ana Blvd., with the morning sunshine on the steps and canons on the grass.
Go inside with your Officiant. If you haven't filled out the on-line application, stop at a computer kiosk and fill out the information. You will need to know information about your fiancés parents (names, places of birth, etc.) and the dates of past divorces.
Tell the clerk to leave the date of marriage blank, just in case the marriage happens on Saturday or Sunday, instead of on Friday. Plans can and do get messed up!
After you receive your license (they're really slow - there are only two people in all of Orange County who are allowed to process the paperwork), you and your Officiant will drive to the jail and get in line to visit the prisoner, where you will wait to visit the prisoner. It is ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY that you tell the guard when you check in that you need a visiting booth where you can "pass papers". Get the name of the guard who you told that you need to pass papers, and when it's your turn to visit the prisoner, double check that you will be assigned a booth where you can pass paper - and get the name of that guard as well. The guards like to play games, and pretend like you and/or your Officiant didn't request to pass papers, so get their names so you can say, "Officer Hernandez out front said we would be able to pass papers."
Once in the visitors booth, your Officiant will try to get your fiancés signature on the paper at the beginning, and will conduct a legal wedding ceremony, after which your Officiant will take the completed marriage certificate (we will get it to the county recorders office), and leave you to spend the rest of your visit time with your new spouse.
The officiate must complete and return the marriage license within 3 days of the ceremony.
WOW! That's a lot of running around!
Los Angeles County:
We do not travel to Los Angeles County to officiate
jail weddings, but their jails do have the added requirement that the marriage
be approved by the warden prior to picking up your marriage license.
Please check with both the prison, and the county clerk's office, and follow
their rules to the letter!
At state correctional facilities, the prisoner should ask the warden for permission and go through a different process to obtain a marriage license.
If you wish to schedule your jailhouse wedding, please send an e-mail to: TerriJoLange@gmail.com and be sure to let me know WHERE your fiance is incarcerated.
To go to our main web-site, click HERE
Orange County Jails Telephone and Visiting times
Musick Facility Jail
ˇ Friday - Saturday - Sunday 8:00 A.M. to 5:30 P.M.
ˇ Last sign-up to visit: 5:00 P.M
* Visitors must arrive 45 minutes
prior to the visit.
Central Men's Jail
Juvenile Friday - Sunday
Sign-up 11:30 A.M.
Module A, Tanks 3 and 4
* Inmates at the Intake/Release
Center and the
Intake/Release Center Jail
General population Sunday
8:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.
Module J (Protective
Custody) sectors 2,3,4,5,6,7
Module J (Mainline) sectors
1 and 8
Theo Lacy Facility Jail
Friday, Saturday & Sunday 8:00 A.M. to 5:30 P.M.
New Hours Effective October 3, 2003
Friday, Saturday & Sunday 8:00 A.M. to 6:30 P.M.