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Click HERE for our most popular post: a step-by-step guide on How to Elope in New York : how to get a marriage license, find a New York marriage officiant, organize your ceremony, and have your marriage legally registered. See a little more advice HERE,


Legal Registration of your Wedding Officiant

It's VERY IMPORTANT to make sure that your marriage officiant is LEGALLY REGISTERED with the City of New York to perform marriages. There are many CLERGY who can perform your ceremony, but who are not also registered with the city. Even judges and Justices of the Peace need to be registered. This was highlighted in an article in the NYTimes in 2007, about couples who thought they were legally married, but were not! [Funny part - Mary was actually listed as an officiant in a wedding story in the NYTimes on the same day this article was published - a good laugh for everyone at the wedding, who teased the bride and groom.]

Here is how to check. Ask your officiant for their license number, and then doublecheck by phoning the City Clerk's office:

"If you are having a marriage ceremony performed outside of our offices, you must present your marriage license to the marriage officiant. Please note that any marriage officiant who performs a marriage in any of the boroughs of New York City must be registered with the Office of the City Clerk. Therefore, if your marriage ceremony will take place in any of the five boroughs you should ensure that the person performing the ceremony is registered with the Office of the City Clerk (call 212-669-2778 to check)".