Why & Where Are Blood Tests Required for Marriage Licenses?

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In most states, blood tests are not a requirement for marriage licenses. In some states, however, these tests must be completed before a marriage license can be issued. If you are planning on obtaining a marriage license in any of these states, make an appointment with your doctor or at the county clerk’s office to obtain the required tests.

Jurisdictions Requiring Blood Tests

  • Jurisdictions that require both parties to take blood tests before a marriage license can be issued include, as of 2010, the District Of Columbia, Georgia, Oklahoma and Mississippi. In Montana, a blood test is required for the woman only.

What Is Tested For

  • States that require blood tests before issuing a marriage license test for the presence of syphilis, a highly infectious, sexually transmitted disease that causes painful sores and can also be transmitted to unborn babies via infected mothers.

Where to be Tested

  • Blood tests can be performed by private physicians or by the county health department. Once the results are sent back to the county clerk’s office, a marriage license is automatically issued if both parties test negative.

If a Test is Positive

  • If one or more of the parties test positive, a marriage license may be refused. In some cases, a license can be issued if both parties are informed of the test results and still wish to marry.

Considerations

  • Learning as much about your partner’s health history prior to applying for a marriage license is important, both for your health and for the health of any future children that may result from the marriage.

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References

  • Photo Credit bride and groom image by cherie from Fotolia.com
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