Home Marriage Double Proxy Marriage Explained: Everything You Need To Know

Double Proxy Marriage Explained: Everything You Need To Know

Double Proxy Marriage Explained: Everything You Need To Know

What is a Double Proxy Marriage?

A double proxy marriage occurs when neither marriage partner is physically present at the wedding ceremony. Instead, they each designate a stand-in, or proxy, to take their place.

So there are two proxies that serve as representatives of the absent bride and groom. This allows a couple to legally wed even if they cannot be together to exchange vows in person on their wedding day.

Reasons for a Double Proxy Marriage

There are several reasons why a couple may choose to have a double proxy marriage:

Military Service

One of the most common reasons is if one or both partners serve in the military. They may be deployed overseas or assigned to a duty station far from their intended spouse. A double proxy ceremony allows them to marry despite the distance and difficulty of coordinating schedules.


If one or both partners are incarcerated, a double proxy wedding lets them legally marry without special prison accommodations for a ceremony. Proxy marriages are relatively common in situations where a fiancé cannot physically attend the ceremony due to incarceration.

Long Distance Relationships

Sometimes geography keeps loving couples apart for long periods. Partners working abroad, attending school far away from home, or separated by immigration issues can use a double proxy marriage to enjoy legal union while still living apart.

Poor Health

If one or both partners struggle with poor health or limited mobility, proxy representatives allow them to marry without traveling for a traditional ceremony. Severe illness, injury, or disability can all make a double proxy marriage an appealing option.

The Advantages of Double Proxy Marriages

Double proxy marriages enjoy several major advantages:

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Convenience The main benefit is removing travel barriers and coordination issues that would otherwise prevent or delay a couple from legally marrying. Double proxies dispense with the need for both partners to be in the same location at the same time.

Speed These remote ceremonies can come together quite quickly once licenses are obtained and proxies designated. There is no need to wait for the couple’s schedules to sync up for travel and a traditional ceremony.

Low Cost With less coordination complexity to manage, proxy marriages typically cost a fraction of conventional destination wedding expenses. There are no hefty travel bills to pay, simplifying wedding budgets.

Accessibility The format makes marriage available to those limited by military service, incarceration, poor health, immigration restrictions, or simple geography. Proxy representatives facilitate unions that could not happen otherwise.

The Potential Drawbacks

Despite significant advantages, double proxy marriages do come with a few potential downsides couples should consider:

Lack of Ceremony Proxy weddings tend to be very fast, simple civil services without the traditional spectacle and celebration. There are no elaborate receptions, gatherings with friends and family, first dances, etc.

No Physical Presence Partners do miss out on having their legally wedded spouse physically present to exchange vows. There is something to be said for declaring commitment while gazing into each other’s eyes that proxies cannot replicate.

Legal Complexities The unusual format requires extra paperwork and can create headaches around marriage documentation. Different states and countries have varying laws partners must navigate for a valid proxy marriage.

No Residency Established Double proxy marriages do not automatically grant partners legal rights to immigrate or establish residency based on marital status. Additional legal hurdles remain if partners wish to live together as citizens of the same country.

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The Legality of Double Proxy Marriages

Most U.S. states allow some version of proxy marriages. However, the exact requirements vary quite a bit across different state laws. Some American states prohibit double proxy marriage altogether. A few key legal considerations include:

Licensing Partners or their proxies typically must apply for marriage licenses in a state that permits double proxy ceremonies. Different states restrict types of identification accepted, where proxies must apply and appear, etc.

Residency Some states require marriage ceremony participants to live or maintain residence in that state, which can complicate double proxy marriages. Recent legal changes in a few states are making proxy requirements less strict.

Officiants State laws differ on who qualifies to solemnize a proxy marriage. Some require religious leaders, while others permit judges, court clerks, or notaries. Proxies must know officiant requirements.

Witnesses Most states mandate a specific number of adult witnesses to be physically present with proxies during the actual ceremony for it to carry legal weight. Witnesses often must sign marriage certificates.

Wrapping Up

In closing, double proxy weddings can facilitate marital unions otherwise prevented by significant barriers of distance, mobility, freedom or health.

By understanding legal requirements and thoughtful proxy selection, many find connection through this flexible ceremony format. While a somewhat unusual arrangement, double proxy marriage affords meaningful commitment and life partnership to those with limited options.

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