St. Louis City Recorder and Registrar Banner, photos © Robert E. Bilbrey. Link to Home.

© St. Louis City
Recorder of Deeds and Vital Records Registrar

Marriage License
open 8:00 a.m. to
5:00 p.m. weekdays
see Hours and Holidays
for restrictions

City Hall, Room 127
1200 Market Street
Saint Louis
Missouri 63103

Completed Form and Payment due in advance of Marriage Record services.
Please do not call or
E-mail for record look-ups. Please do not E-mail
record requests.

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The State of Missouri
Does Not Recognize
Same Sex Marriage
- Legislative History
- Laws Elsewhere

Section 451.022 RSMo Prohibits
Missouri's Recorders of Deeds from
issuing Marriage Licenses
to same-sex couples


Legislative History


In 1996, Senate Bill 768, relating to the Missouri Family Trust, a program for the care of persons with mental and/or physical disabilities, was amended in the Missouri House of Representatives to include:


1. It is the public policy of this state to recognize marriage only between a man and a woman.
2. Any purported marriage not between a man and a woman is invalid.
3. No recorder shall issue a marriage license, except to a man and a woman.

The legislation was adopted as amended, signed into law by Governor Mel Carnahan, and the marriage definition provision became Section 451.022 RSMo.


In 2001, House Bill 157, relating to the maximum number of days clergypersons and judges have to return a signed Marriage License to the issuing Recorder of Deeds, was amended in the Missouri Senate to require Social Security Numbers on Marriage Applications and add to the 1996 marriage definition:


4. A marriage between persons of the same sex will not be recognized for any purposes in this state even when valid where contracted.


The legislation was adopted as amended and signed into law by Governor Bob Holden.


In 2004, the Missouri General Assembly submitted to Missouri voters Constitutional Amendment #2 (Senate Joint Resolution 29) to amend Missouri's Bill of Rights to define marriage in the Missouri Constitution:


Article 1, Section 33. That to be valid and recognized in this state, a marriage shall exist only between a man and a woman.


Missouri voters approved the referendum issue on August 3, 2004:



The City of Saint Louis was the only Missouri county where the ballot issue failed.


Elsewhere in the United States


Six States, the District of Columbia, and the Coquille Indian Tribe issue Marriage Licenses to same-sex couples:


Coquille Indian Tribe (pdf)
District of Columbia



New Hampshire
New York

Two States provide Civil Unions for same-sex and opposite sex couples:

Hawaii (pdf) - effective date January 1, 2012
Illinois - effective date June 1, 2012


Six States provide a Domestic Partnership Registry:

California- for same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples where one partner is at least age 62
Maine- for same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples

Nevada- for same-sex couples and opposite sex couples

Oregon- for same-sex couples only

Washington- for same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples where one partner is at least age 62
Wisconsin - for same-sex couples only






Missouri Political Subdivisions Providing Domestic Partner Registries

Since 1997, the City of St. Louis has provided a Domestic Partnership Registry for same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples.

Use this Form to register your
Partnership with
the City Register

Contact: 314.622.4145
St. Louis City Register*
City Hall, Room 118
1200 Market Street
St. Louis, Missouri  63103

*The City Register is the City's
city/county clerk, an office separate
from the City Recorder of Deeds and
Vital Records Registrar.

Columbia (2009)
Jackson County (2003) Kansas City (2003)
Olivette (2011)
University City (pdf)

20 States and the District of Columbia Provide Benefits to Same-Sex Partners of State/District Employees

Connecticut (pdf)
District of Columbia
Maryland (pdf)
Montana (pdf)
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York (pdf)
Oregon (pdf)
Rhode Island
Washington (pdf)
Wisconsin (pdf)