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July 6, 2015

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Three necessities for getting hitched in The Wedding Capital of the World


Steve Marcus

Elvis impersonator Roddy Ragsdale entertains Lynn Hassell, 46, and Neil Cawkwell, 45, of Ascot, England, as they ride back to their hotel after being married at The Little White Wedding Chapel on The Strip on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010. Driver Oscar Oscar Villegas is at right.

With so many different ways to get married in Las Vegas, it’s easy to forget that there are a few basics that every wedding needs to make it official. Whether you’re throwing a lavish bash at the Wynn or stopping at the drive-thru chapel, here are the three essentials for tying the knot in The Wedding Capital of the World (and nearly everywhere, really):

An officiator: Whether you’re getting married by a minister or an Elvis impersonator, he or she must have a license -- all weddings in Las Vegas and Nevada require an officiator licensed by the state to perform a ceremony.

A witness: Every couple needs to have another person (beyond the officiator) present to witness the license. Unlike an officiator, the witness doesn’t need to meet any criteria -- it can be a best friend or a stranger off the street, although if no guests are present, the photographer or another staff member wherever the ceremony is held will usually do just fine.

A license: The marriage license must be obtained before the ceremony. Couples should go the Clark County Courthouse between 8 a.m. and midnight to pick one up for $60, and both individuals must be present. That document is then taken to the ceremony location, where the officiator can have it witnessed and signed. After the ceremony, the license should be filed with the Clark County Records Office; vow renewals and commitment ceremonies don’t require any kind of legal document.

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  1. The 4th necessity is a quart of scotch.