Court Technology, the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) and the Indiana State Library (ISL) have automated the process for issuing Marriage Licenses at local Circuit Court Clerks' offices. The goal is to collect all the information required just one time and store records electronically so information is easy to retrieve and transmit for state agencies as required by Indiana Code.
Every year, about 45,000 couples marry in Indiana and each must go to the clerk’s office for a license. When the project began, the couple’s names were each handwritten three times in a cumbersome, paper record book. That means names were written 270,000 times a year, equal to one name being written every other minute, every day of the year. That doesn’t include the time it took to enter the records into IDOH or ISL databases.
The Marriage License E-file System is a web-based application available free of charge through INcite (Indiana Court Information Technology Extranet). Clerks use the system to automate and expedite functions previously done by hand. All 92 counties are using the system and have issued over 420,000 marriage licenses.
The electronic Marriage License Application captures the information entered by the Clerk, who then prints an application for the couple to sign, attesting to the accuracy of the personal information. A Marriage License form for the Officiant to complete and sign upon solemnization is also created. The officiant simply returns the license after the ceremony, and the Clerk electronically enters the officiant’s information, date and location of the marriage.
Certified copies of recorded marriage licenses required for a Real ID from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) or other reasons can be obtained from the Circuit Court Clerk's office where the marriage license was issued.
Benefits of the System
The system gives clerks the ability to print a marriage license directly from the web-based system, eliminating the need to purchase costly paper record books. Clerks can also quickly search for marriage records statewide. When a marriage record is found, the county which originally produced the license may print certified copies without the need to search through stacks of record books.
The Marriage License E-File System ensures current and accurate information will be available to state agencies that require marriage data. Court Technology provides system access to IDOH and sends information to DCS as required by law. This eliminates the need for counties to forward paper forms to the IDOH, saving postage and mailing costs, and eliminating the need for duplicate data entry by IDOH.
Court Technology offers up-to-date public information to citizens via the Internet: https://publicaccess.courts.in.gov/MLPL/. IDOH is adding its existing database of marriages since 1993 to the system and it is anticipated the Indiana State Library will also provide its electronic marriage data. This will allow a single, searchable online database of public marriage data for research purposes.
Jill Russell, Project Manager
Office of Court Technology