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Welcome. If you are already in a legal State of Wisconsin Domestic Partnership and want a certified copy of your Declaration, you need to contact the Register of Deeds office in the county in which it was filed.
WHO CAN APPLY?
Applicants must be 18 years of age or older, be of the same sex and share, or intend to share, a residence in Wisconsin. Applicants must not currently be in a legal Wisconsin domestic partnership and cannot be related to one another closer than second cousins either by blood or adoption.
WHERE SHOULD WE APPLY?
You must apply in the County Clerk’s office in the county where at least one of you has been living for the last 30 days; once filed, the declaration of domestic partnership will be valid anywhere in Wisconsin.
The La Crosse County Clerk’s office is located in the Administrative Center at 400 4th St. North in Room 1210 near downtown La Crosse.
If you must apply in another county, please contact the appropriate County Clerk’s Office.
WHEN SHOULD WE APPLY?
There is a mandatory five-day waiting period, which starts the day AFTER you apply. Therefore, if you applied on the 1st day of the month, the declaration cannot be issued until the 6th day of the month. If the issuance date falls on a day when the office isn’t open, it will be issued the next working day. Therefore, a declaration applied for on a Monday would not be issued until the following Monday. The declaration is not legal until it has been filed in the Register of Deeds office. It is the responsibility of the partners to do so.
IDENTIFICATION / BIRTH DATE:
All applicants, regardless of age, are required to furnish a non-expired photo ID and a **CERTIFIED Birth Certificate**. This is the signed copy of the birth certificate which bears the raised County or State Seal issued from the Register of Deeds or Recorder in the County of birth or from the Office of Vital Statistics in the State of birth.
** A birth notification (no raised seal or signature) is not acceptable nor is the one that a hospital issues, even though it may have a decorative hospital seal. These are birth announcements only and cannot be accepted.
It is illegal to make a photo-copy of any vital record (birth, death, marriage, divorce certificate or domestic partnership declaration). Such violation may be subject to a $10,000 fine. If we are presented with an illegal photo-copy, we are required to confiscate it.
PROOF OF ADDRESS:
Proof of current address is also required. Your current address is where you have physically lived 30 days prior to the date of applying. A post office box is not acceptable. If the address on your driver’s license or ID card is not current, a lease, utility statement, phone bill, etc. may also be acceptable.
SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER:
Everyone must furnish his or her Social Security number in order to apply for a declaration of domestic partnership. It is not required that we see the social security card.
If either of you have ever been married, and the last marriage ended in death, we must see the certified death certificate. If the last marriage ended in divorce we must see a certified divorce certificate or a copy of the final divorce judgment/decree. This is sometimes referred to as the dissolution of marriage and it must be signed by the judge and/or stamped by the court.
PREVIOUS DOMESTIC PARTNERSHIP:
If you were previously in a domestic partnership (as established under Chapter 770, Wis. Stats.) and that was the last legal relationship you were a party to, you must show proof of how the last domestic partnership ended.
Terminated domestic partnership: There is a 90-day waiting period from the date a Certificate of Termination of a Domestic Partnership is filed in the Register of Deeds Office before a party to that partnership may apply for another domestic partnership in Wisconsin.
Divorce: There is no waiting period between a divorce and the application for a declaration of domestic partnership.
Marriage: If one of the partners marries while the partnership is in effect, the domestic partnership is terminated automatically on the date of the marriage and there is no waiting period for the other partner to apply for a domestic partnership with another partner.
The cost of a declaration of domestic partnership in La Crosse County is $90.00, payable at the time of application. This must be paid in cash; we cannot accept checks or credit cards.
If, for any reason, the declaration is not issued, a partial refund of $45 may be given if ALL of the following criteria are met:
Applicant receiving the refund returns the written receipt.
The declaration has NOT been picked up by either party.
No more than 60 days has elapsed since the application date.
PARTNERS: The County & Municipality in which each resides. Race, number of previous domestic partnerships, and last completed grade of education.
PARENTS: The full legal name of both parents for each partner: first, middle, and last name at birth (often referred to as surname or maiden name).
FOREIGN LANGUAGE: If any of the required documents are in a foreign language, a notarized English translation must also be provided. Translations from family or friends are not acceptable.
DISCLAIMER: Due to space limitations, this information may not address every possible circumstance. Please contact us for further information, if necessary, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 608-785-9581.
Additional information regarding domestic partnership rights, etc. can be found at fairwisconsin.com
We are open Monday through Friday, 8:00 – 4:30 effective October 1, 2012.
Thank you for visiting us at the La Crosse County Web Page. We look forward to serving you.