Many times in the past couples have asked me to issue their marriage license after their wedding ceremony took place with another officiant. I can do that, however, you would need to have yet another wedding ceremony thereafter. It is required by California law that you purchase a marriage license before your legal wedding ceremony.
Some couples either forget to get a marriage license before their wedding or were misinformed that they actually needed a wedding license in order to be legally married. They have begged me to issue their marriage license and predate it before their wedding ceremony with family and friends. That would be illegal, and as an agent of Los Angeles County, I cannot do that. As an attorney, I can also say that upholding the law is very important to me.
However, if you forgot to get your marriage license or you did not know you needed one and then discovered later that you did indeed need one, don’t worry. I have issued marriage licenses for countless brides and grooms and then immediately afterward officiated another wedding ceremony.
Since the type of marriage license I issue is called a California confidential marriage license, once I hand submit it to the LA County Clerk’s Office, it will be sealed from the public view, and then nobody would ever know that you had your legal marriage on a day other than your “public” marriage.
Another perk is that you then get two anniversaries, if you choose to acknowledge the legal one. I know there are many couples who have a secret wedding dinner on their legal anniversary, and a family and friends celebration on their public wedding date.