Here Comes the Bride/Groom, Marriage in Minnesota Approved by ICE

Did you know that it is possible to marry your partner while he/she is in ICE detention in Minnesota?  The detainee, his attorney, or someone acting on his behalf can request permission from ICE to marry. ICE can approve or deny the request. ICE will look at the individual facts of each request before deciding whether to approve or deny a request.

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How can a detainee make a request to marry?

The person acting on behalf of the detainee can make a request by either dropping off the request to 1 Federal Drive, Suite 1850, Fort Snelling, MN 55111 or faxing it to (612) 843-8771. The request must be in writing and should be addressed to Officer Eric O'Denius.

 

What should the request state?

The request must: (1) specifically express that the detainee is legally eligible to be married in the state where the detainee is being held; and (2) include the intended spouse’s written affirmation of his/her intent to marry the detainee. The request should also include a copy of a valid marriage license from the State of Minnesota. Each county may have different rules for obtaining a marriage license.  There are specific rules one must follow for individuals with a criminal history.

 

Who will pay for expenses relating to the marriage?

The detainee or person acting on his/her behalf must bear the expenses of the wedding. ICE will not pay for any costs, such as the costs of obtaining a marriage license or the cost of hiring an official to perform the marriage.

 

Will ICE provide an official to perform the wedding?

No. The detainee, his attorney, or someone acting on behalf of the detainee will have to arrange for an official to perform the wedding.

 

Where can the wedding take place?

In most cases, the marriage will occur at,

1 Federal Drive,
Suite 1850,
Fort Snelling, MN 55111

 

Who can come to the wedding?

At the discretion of the Field Office Director, Peter Berg, the following individuals can be present: two witnesses, an officiant, the attorney, and the interpreter.

 

What can be brought to the wedding?

A valid marriage license, identification, and a ring for the non-detained partner. Anything given to the detainee will be taken from him/her and stored in their property.

 

Can we videotape the wedding and take pictures?

No videotaping is allowed. At the discretion of the Field Office Director, one photograph is allowed.  

 

Can I kiss my partner at any point?

At the discretion of the ICE officer, the couple may be allowed one kiss.

 

Can my detained partner and I choose the date of the wedding?

No. Once the request is sent to the Field Office Director, the date is coordinated with the ICE officer.

 

My detained partner’s request to marry was denied. What can we do?

The person acting on behalf of the detainee can request the Field Office Director to reconsider the denial of the request to marry.