marriage license

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary

A document that authorizes a couple to get married, usually available from the county clerk's office in the state where the marriage will take place. Couples pay a small fee for a marriage license, and must often wait a few days before it is issued. In addition, a few states require a short waiting period -- usually not more than a day -- between the time the license is issued and the time the marriage may take place. And some states still require blood tests for couples before they will issue a marriage license, though most no longer do.

Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.