HB 555

85(R) - 2017
House County Affairs
Senate State Affairs
House County Affairs
Senate State Affairs

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Negative
  • Neutral


Drew Springer


Bryan Hughes

Bill Caption

Relating to an additional fee for issuing a marriage license to applicants who are not residents of this state. 

Fiscal Notes

No significant fiscal implication to the state is anticipated.

Bill Analysis

This bill would allow a county clerk to charge a fee of no more than $100 for out-of-state marriage license applicants.

Vote Recommendation Notes

Imposing a licensure requirement and imposing a fee to get married is a dubious policy in the first place. This bill increases a fee and drains resources from private individuals simply based on the fact that they are not residents of the state of Texas. It is not the proper role of government to charge excessive and unnecessary fees to fund itself.

Furthermore, it has been argued that this is necessary because out of state marriage license applicants create more work for county clerks. That may be true but weddings in Texas for nonresidents create far more benefit to the local economy than whatever extra work is required for a county clerk. These weddings generate additional business for hotels, restaurants, florists, catering companies, and a host of other small businesses. These weddings generate additional tax revenues based on all of the additional taxable goods and services sold that otherwise would not have been if the out of state residents had not decided to have their wedding in Texas.

With that background in mind, even if one subscribes to the idea of charging money for a license to get married, it does not make sense to further penalize an out of state marriage license applicant who is bringing taxable business to this state. 

HB 555 violates our liberty principle of limited government; therefore we oppose this bill.  

Organizations Supporting

County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas
Texas Conference of Urban Counties