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Where To Have A Civil Wedding Ceremony

How To Plan A Courthouse Wedding

Civil Ceremony Wedding Video

Do you fantasize about ditching the traditional wedding plans and saying “I do” in a city hall? Perhaps you’d prefer to fast-forward the engagement period and start your married life adventures together already. It could be that exchanging vows in an intimate, low-key setting appeals more to you than broadcasting your affection in front of 150 guests, some of whom you might not even know that well. Maybe you want to sock away the funds you would have spent on a blowout bash for the honeymoon of your dreams or a down payment on that house you’ve been eyeing. Or, you might be enthusiastically shaking your head “yes” to all of the above, in which casewe’ve got you covered.

Meet the Expert

  • Danielle Jeatran is a lawyer turned wedding planner who owns Wild Luxe Weddings in Hawaii.
  • Carla Friday is a wedding coordinator and founder of Details Made Simple, which provides services for couples in New Jersey, New York City, Connecticut, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C.
  • is a relationship and etiquette expert who shares lifestyle and relationship tips for women.

You’ll save a lot of money with an intimate courthouse wedding, but it’s still just as important to make it special. Here, wedding pros share their insights on etiquette and how to prep for and plan an unforgettable courthouse ceremony.

Civil Weddings Outside Of A Courthouse

If you would like your ceremony to be held in your home orsome other location that is special to you, pleasecontact alocal Administrative Justice of the Peace.

Administrative Justices of the Peace are listed by county, but are authorized to perform ceremonies anywhere in the province of Nova Scotia.

Justices of the Peace will do their best to accommodate individual preferences to ensure that your important day is a memorable one. You should discuss your specific wishes and preferences for your wedding day with the Administrative Justice of the Peace who will be performing the ceremony beforehand.

What Is A Civil Marriageceremony

A civil marriage ceremony is a non-secular andlegally-binding way to get married in Ireland. If you choose to have a civilceremony, there can be no mention of anything religious or spiritual in theceremony.

In a civil ceremony, a will solemnise the marriage.

A solemniser is the term used for people licensed by the State toconduct weddings. The Registerof Solemnisers has information and contact details for people who canperform marriage ceremonies in Ireland. It is updated on a regular basis.

You can have a civil marriage ceremony in either a registry office, or in apublic venue that has been approved by the registry office.

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Protestant Wedding Script And Vows

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Protestantism is the largest grouping of Christians in the United States with its combined denominations collectively comprising 141 million people.

Each Protestant group has its own ceremony. Some are more liberal than others and more open to non-traditional components. Many of its ceremonies can be traced back to the 16th century Church of England.

The Introductory Prayer

The Protestant wedding ceremony script begins with the officiant â known as the Celebrant in this case â faces the audience and offers the introduction that Hollywood has made so familiar:

Dearly beloved, we have come together in the presence of God to witness and bless the joining together of this man and this woman in Holy Matrimony. The bond and covenant of marriage was established by God in creation, and our Lord Jesus Christ adorned this manner of life by His presence and first miracle at the wedding in Cana of Galilee. It signifies to us the mystery of the union between Christ and His Church, and Holy Scripture commends it to be honored among all people.

The union of husband and wife is intended by God for their mutual joy for the help and comfort given each other in prosperity and adversity and, when it is Godâs will, for the procreation of children and their nurture in the knowledge and love of the Lord. Therefore marriage is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but reverently, deliberately, and in accordance with the purposes for which it was instituted by God.

Short Funny Wedding Ceremony Script

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A funny wedding script starts often with the officiant. They set the mood. If thatâs what you want and you have an officiant who can carry off a light-hearted approach to the ceremony, go with it! Be sure to not resort to dark humor, you want to remember the beauty of the day. Do you want to add humor to your wedding script? Remember you will have a wide range of family and friends at the ceremony, be sure you donât offend anyone.

âI promise to hold off secretly watching episodes of Game of Thrones â until we are actually together.â

âIn front of our friends and family gathered here, I promise to love and cherish you in good times and in bad. I promise to put down the toilet seat â and to replace the toilet roll when itâs over and to never, ever, ever forget our wedding anniversary or your birthday.â

âI vow to stand by your side when the zombie apocalypse comes and, should you be turned into one, I promise to let you bite me, so I can too be one and, therefore, stay by your side forever.â

Now thatâs love!

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Spiritual Vs Religious And Civil Ceremonies

While not a religious ceremony, spiritual ceremonies can include religious beliefs and can be the most inclusive of all ceremonies because couples of different belief systems or faiths can honor their traditions by including prayers, rituals, readings, and vows sacred to their religion. However, you may be asking yourself, What is spirituality?

In short, spirituality is a deeply personal realization through the experience of life that there is a connection between you and something greater than yourself. It affects the way you live, the way you connect to your life’s immediate moments through consciousness, the self, your relationship to others, and nature. Like religion, its a path to pursue answers to the fundamental questions of ones existence: Who am I? What is the meaning of life? What is my purpose?

Civil Marriage Ceremonies At The County

The County has everything you need for a civil marriage ceremony:

  • A wedding chapel

    Youll need to reserve the chapel in person ceremonies are scheduled for 10-minute blocks of time, Tuesday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 3:40 p.m. You can purchase additional ten-minute blocks for a longer ceremony.

    The chapel seats 15 people.

  • A wedding official who marries you.
  • A witness to the weddingbring a friend or family member to witness the event or, for a fee, the county can provide a witness.
  • Wedding rings .

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Apply For Your Marriage License

Youve picked your location. Youve researched your citys requirements. Now, its time to apply for your marriage license. Again, specific requirements will vary by state but generally, heres what both you and your partner will need:

  • A valid form of government-issued picture ID, such as a drivers license, naturalization certificate, or passport
  • If either party has been divorced: A copy of the final dissolution
  • Payment for your marriage license

Note that most marriage licenses have an expiration date as short as 30 days and as long as 90. That means you need to schedule your ceremony so it takes place before the marriage license expires.

Additionally, some states have a waiting period between when you receive your marriage license and when you can actually get married. That waiting period can take anywhere from 24 hours to 6 days . Take these factors into consideration when you schedule your wedding date.

How Does A Civil Wedding Ceremony Work

How to Plan a Civil Ceremony

A civil wedding ceremony is a legal and non-religious marriage of two people that is offered as an alternative to the traditional religious marriage. It is usually performed by a government official and often must take place in a specialized venue. Many people are choosing this option to secure their love in a non-traditional way with their close friends and family.

If you are unsure how to prepare for a civil wedding ceremony, read this OneHowTo article where we will explain: how does a Civil Wedding ceremony work?

The first step you must take is to notify your local register office. You will be asked to provide legal documents including a valid passport and/or national identity card, birth certificate, proof of your address, certificate or registration and certificate of naturalization. Make sure to check with your local register as these documents may differ from country to country. This process must be done at least 28 days before the ceremony.

Once your have notified your local register you must choose a location. In most countries these civil ceremonies are only officiated in the city hall or courthouses. However, some countries do have licensed locations that include hotels, country clubs or authorized religious premises. You will be given a time and date for the ceremony. You can find more ideas in our article on how to plan a civil wedding, where you’ll find plenty of tips and suggestions for your civil wedding.

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Does City Hall Provide An Officiant

Yes, they do! San Francisco City Hall assigns an officiant to perform your wedding , who you will meet on the day of your ceremony. These judges serve on a volunteer basis for City Hall weddings. If youd prefer to have a friend or family member officiate for you , they can apply to be a Deputy Marriage Commissioner for a Day.

Invite Your Closest Family Members Or Friends

One huge benefit of a no-fuss ceremony is that you don’t need to adhere to the rules and politics associated with a typical wedding guest list and can pare it down to the chosen few who really mean the world to you. Every city hall may have slightly different rules and regulations. Jeatran suggests checking in advance. “See how many witnesses are needed and how many people may attend.” This will usually be a small number of guests, so think about inviting your closest family members and friends.

Consider having a maid of honor or best man serve as the witness. If you prefer to have just the two of you present, your photographer can also be a designated witness.

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How Many Witnesses Do I Need

Per California state law, one witness needs to be present during the ceremony. You may bring a second witness if you wish. Your witness must accompany you when you check in to Room 168 before your ceremony time. If its just going to be the two of you, your photographer would be honored to act as your witness. We do this all the time!

Baptist Wedding Ceremony Script

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When planning the wedding ceremony, incorporate the most important Baptist elements. Although there are many established traditions in a Baptist ceremony you can still personalize the service. Add your own words and thoughts into the vows and including family and friends.

With this ring I thee wed, and all my worldly goods I thee endow. In sickness and in health, in poverty or in wealth, âtil death do us part.

If your unsure as to what the defining difference is, Baptists believe in salvation in God alone â as opposed to the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Baptists also do not follow the Holy sacraments as the way to salvation. Since marriage is one of the Holiest sacraments, there will be a fairly significant difference here.

Pagan is a legally recognized faith with three main religions. There are many traditions that fall under the Pagan title.

  • Wicca: This is a nature-oriented faith which uses the seasons as the focus of their beliefs.
  • Druidry: Based on the Celtic heritage of storytelling and poetry.
  • Asatru: Based on Northern European beliefs drawing on the virtues of the Vikings, three of which are courage, truth, and honor.

The couple will say they do.

The couple will say they do.

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What Is A Civil Ceremony Anyway

First things first you need to know what a civil ceremony is before you can start planning one, right?

Contrary to what you might think, a civil ceremony doesn’t mean common law, a civil union or even a drive-through, Vegas-style affair. A civil ceremony is simply a nonreligious, legal marriage ceremony presided over by a legal official instead of a religious one.

Wedding Ceremony Script For A Virtual Wedding

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A virtual wedding ceremony is a wonderful alternative given the issues with Covid-19. It may just be a placeholder until you can celebrate in person with family and friends. Also, you can share this day with family members who can not be with you physically. Zoom can help you set the stage for a magical event.

The wedding ceremony script will be as a standard ceremony script, but without a few details. Also, you can personalize it depends on your religion and preferences.

  • Opening and welcome
  • Expression of intent
  • Readings, hymns, music, prayers
  • An address or a sermon
  • Vows


Only a few states allow notaries to officiate at weddings. They have also obtained a license as an officiate through a recognized program. If they have become ordained, be sure to vet them carefully to find out if they are reputable, what fees they will charge and if they are recognized in the place you are to be married. Be sure your officiate is able to marry you and file all the important paperwork.

Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to join this manand this woman in matrimony.

Exchange of Vows

Exchange of Rings

I give you this ring as a token and pledge of our constant faith and abiding love.

PronouncementNotary asks the couple to join hands, then declares,

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Church Wedding Vs Civil Wedding Ceremony

Theres no doubt that organising a wedding is both an exciting and challenging time. With copious amounts of decisions to make about the big day, youll be pouring over every detail from where Aunt Hilda will sit, to the nail polish youll wear!

But one of the biggest decisions to make is whether to have a church wedding ceremony or civil ceremony. Both have their merits, which is why its a very personal decision to each couple. Here we examine the pros and cons of both.

Getting Married During Coronavirus Restrictions

Civil Wedding Ceremony in Manhattan

To have a legal marriage ceremony, you only need the following people:

  • the marriage officiant
  • the couple
  • 2 witnesses

This means that you can get married in-person and follow the order that limits the number of people attending gatherings for the purpose of a wedding. Rules on physical distancing and face coverings still apply.

ServiceOntario continues to register marriages and issue marriage certificates. However, there may be some delays as we strive to ensure the safety of our employees and physical distancing.

Find out information about physical distancing and check with your municipality to see if there are further bylaws in place for physical distancing.

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