Marriage, civil unions to return to Lake County courthouse, virtually
Using Zoom, Lake County judges will resume presiding over weddings and civil unions.
The service will be available to active-duty members of the military and couples with at least one Lake County resident, according to a news release issued Friday by court officials.
Kasey Morgan, a spokeswoman for the courthouse in Waukegan, said she has received at least four inquiries per day from couples wanting to get married since the courthouse shut down March 17.
"I'm not exaggerating; it's been every day," she said. "Saturdays and Sunday included. People want to get married."
To have a judge officiate a wedding virtually, couples must obtain a marriage license -- by appointment only -- from the Lake County clerk's office. The office can be reached at (847) 377-2400.
One member of the couple must visit the clerk of the circuit court's office at the Waukegan courthouse to pay a $10 cash fee the day the license is issued.
Judges are available to officiate weddings from 2:30 to 4:15 p.m. from Monday through Friday on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve time, couples must call the court administration office before noon the day they wish to be wed. The office number is (847) 377-3696.
The ceremonies will be performed on Zoom calls. The new system is accessible by going to 19thcircuitcourt.state.il.us and clicking "remote court hearings." The court staff has set up virtual meeting rooms and YouTube pages for each courtroom.
And anyone wishing to "attend" will be able to watch the associated courtroom YouTube channel where the Zoom call will be streamed live.
The judge will have the original marriage license during the ceremony. After the ceremony, the license will be recorded and mailed to the couple.