One of the most significant pre-wedding tasks you can ever take on is certainly not buttercream or seating chart, but asking someone (or two) to get your accepted witnesses to your wedding day. Witnesses perform a crucial function in guaranteeing your titanium wedding bands is legal, and their signatures appear on your marriage license and certificate—which are in that case used to officially prove that you’re here married! So who can you select?

In short, anyone who is over the age of 18 and has a valid form of photo ID. They will don’t necessarily have to be present for the entire commemoration, but they must be able to actually watch you exchange your vows and sign the license later. They don’t need to be a member of the family or good friend, but they needs to be the kind of person you’ll think of fondly whenever you check out your license.

Having witnesses at your wedding ceremony also serves as paperwork of the celebration, which can be within case any issues arise down the road, such as in legal actions or when ever applying for govt benefits. And in many nationalities and religions, having witnesses is a traditional, meaningful area of the ceremony alone!

Typically, you’ll want a minimum of two witnesses, yet this really does vary by state. Likewise, in some cases, you can actually hold a quick “license signing ceremony” following your symbolic marriage, just to make it legal, without having any witnesses signal for you by any means. If this is the truth for you, merely check with your local county clerk’s office to find out more.