Wisconsin Marriage Records Online
When conducting genealogical research, Wisconsin marriage records are going to be extremely useful. On a marriage license, marriage register or marriage certificate, you will find important information that will help you build your family tree. Normally, these records contain the full name (including the maiden name) of the bride and the full name of the groom. The date and location of the ceremony is also typically provided on these records.
Often times there is additional information on marriage licenses. Marriage registrations or marriage certificates can be helpful to you as you research your family tree through Wisconsin marriage records. The bride's and groom's ages and/or their birthdays, as well as their residence and place of work at the time of the wedding might be in these documents as well. Maybe the most commonplace piece of information that could be on these documents is the name and birthplaces of the bride's parents as well as the names and birthplaces of the groom's parents. That information can truly help you when you are putting together your family tree.
While you are searching Wisconsin marriage records, it is important that you have the proper information to make your search as easy and as accurate as it can be. You will need the full name of the ancestor and the full name of their spouse. Middle names should be noted, as a lot of people might have a similar first and last name as others in their time. You should find out both names of within the couple first, as this will assist you in making sure that you are looking at the proper record for the right person.
The date of the marriage will be useful in your research also. While you certainly may not know the exact date that the marriage took place, knowing the approximate year will help guide your search to the correct record for the marriage you are trying to find documentation on.
The approximate location that the marriage took place will be helpful in your research also. Knowing the county in which the marriage took place is a good start, as it will be less difficult to limit the search parameters down to a small number of possible cities. Usually, marriage licenses are printed and kept at the health department of the city in which the ceremony was done.
You should not worry if you can't find the license because there are other ways to verify marriage. If the wedding ceremony took place at a church, you may be able to locate a record of the event within the church's old records. It may be even easier if they were married by in a courthouse because you can check court records for the marriage event. Often times couples will announce their engagement or wedding in the local newspapers, so newspaper archives could have a record related to the marriage, sometimes with a picture.
You can access marriage records by visiting the Wisconsin Vital Records office and making a formal request. You cannot request copies of records online or over the phone as the state law requires payment and a signature.
Wisconsin Marriage Certificates
To obtain a Wisconsin marriage record, follow these instructions below:
Read the instruction carefully. Then complete the form with the information about the marriage certificate, including the birth names of bride and groom, location and date of marriage.
Submit your completed application to the address below, or stop by in person. You must include a check or money order for $20.
Send your completed application to:
1 Wilson Street
Madison, WI 53701-0309
Where to Find Wisconsin Marriage Records
In Wisconsin, marriage records are considered a vital event and are maintained at the Vital Records Office with the Department of Health Services. Records from 1857 to the present are located at this office.
Search Limitations for Marriage Records
If you do not know the exact date of marriage, the Vital Records office can search any five-year period from October 1, 1907 through 1972. Multi-year searches can be performed for records prior to 1907 and 1973 to the present.
Identification Requirements for Requesting Marriage Records
In Wisconsin, proper identification is required for obtaining a copy of a marriage record. A government issued driver's license or ID must be presented in person, or a legible copy sent along with an application form.
When Your Spouse Has No Interest in Money
A medical situation I recently experienced made me realize that if something unexpected and dire happened to me, my husband wouldn’t have a clue how to begin unraveling our finances.
It’s not that I’m keeping things from him. He has just never shown any interest in our financial affairs and has left the reigns in my hands for our 31-year marriage. This could be a terrible problem for him and our loved ones if I’m not here some day or become incapacitated.
Preparing for the Unexpected Together
And if it sounds like your marriage — no matter which spouse couldn’t care less about money matters — it’s essential that you both take steps to prepare for the worst as soon as possible.
In the past, it might have been easier for my husband to figure our finances out. Years ago, all he’d have to do was go to the mailbox to see our bank, investment and credit card statements. But like many households, I’ve turned all our banking and billing pay online. Problem is: While most of the world is connected, my husband is one of the estimated 13 percent of Americans who doesn’t regularly use the Internet.
It turns out our situation isn’t at all uncommon.
“This is not even a generational thing,” said Mike Pruitt, a Certified Financial Planner with MBE Wealth Management in Madison, Wis. “There is usually one spouse in a relationship that is not interested in the finances.”
It can be, however, disastrous for the spouse or partner who isn’t in the loop should the other spouse or partner die or become incapacitated.
Doris Belland, a financial literary educator and the author of Protect Your Purse, was only 32 when her husband passed away. They both handled the finances of their respective businesses, but he took care of the investments. When he died, she realized she was unprepared to deal with the finances and the $400,000 of debt on his business because she didn’t know much about the family investments.
Belland wishes now that she had discussed more about money with her husband. “Having these types of discussions is not being morose,” said Belland. “It’s about your protection and when you are prepared, it leads to a more joyful life.”
Advice for Couples Mismatched About Money
Here are some tips for couples where one spouse is begging off dealing with finances:
Prepare a valid will. Belland’s husband didn’t have one, which greatly complicated matters. While preparing a will, you also need to get important papers in order, said Rick Kollauf, director of business advisory at BMO Wealth Management in Milwaukee.
Make sure each of you knows where all your key documents are located. This includes marriage licenses, birth certificates, passports, life insurance policies, and passwords to all your financial accounts. Be certain, too, that both partners have access.
In addition, both spouses should have a list of the household’s financial advisers: attorneys, insurance agents, financial planners and bankers.
Plan a monthly date night to talk about money. These might not be the most exciting dates you’ve ever had with your spouse, but Belland recommends them. Start with the basics and don’t get too complicated.
“Look at what comes in and what goes out and put all the bills on the table and add in your discretionary income,” said Pruitt. “It all starts with both understanding the basics and making cash flow decisions together.”
Move on to a conversation about insurance and investments. When there is a comfort level with the basics, move on to helping your spouse understand insurance and investment portfolios. “We can assume one partner is better at it, but it’s amazing what the other partner can learn,” Belland said.
Analyze the rest of your assets. Don’t overlook reviewing the value and financial documents for things like real estate, vehicle and any collections.
Create a plan for “what if.” Pruitt said, “A plan is essential, but it is just a piece of paper.”
Bring a financial adviser into the picture. If one of you works with a financial adviser, the other should meet him or her. And if neither of you has a money pro, you might want to get one. Be sure the person you hire is what’s known as a fiduciary, who is supposed to put your interests first. “This still isn’t a guarantee that you won’t fall into the wrong hands, but at least it gives you more legal recourse,” said Pruitt.
The adviser can also help the spouse who isn’t interested in money become more comfortable with the topic. “It’s my job to help the spouse breathe easier, not to sell them something,” said Scott Thoma, an investment strategist for Edward Jones in St. Louis.
Hmmm. I foresee a romantic date night with my husband with the flicker of the computer screen, a spread of numbers and a couple of glasses of wine.
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