Officiant of a marriage or civil union

In Québec, only the following persons can solemnize a marriage or civil union:

  • Ministers of religion, who solemnize marriages and civil unions according to the chosen religion and who are authorized to do so by a religious society recognized by the Directeur de l’état civil;
  • Notaries, who are authorized by law to execute notarized acts;
  • Clerks and deputy clerks of the Superior Court, who are designated as officiants by the Directeur de l’état civil;
  • Mayors, municipal and borough council members, and other municipal officers, who are designated by the Directeur de l’état civil;
  • Any other person who files an application with the Directeur de l’état civil, such as a friend, a loved one or a family member of the intended spouses. This person is commonly called the “designated officiant” or “one-day officiant”.

Authorization and designation

Since January 1, 2018, the Directeur de l’état civil has been responsible for processing applications for authorization to solemnize a marriage or civil union that concern officiants of a single event (designated officiant), mayors, council members and municipal officers, as well as clerks and deputy clerks.

Accordingly, the Directeur de l’état civil keeps the register of officiants up to date; the register indicates the names of those authorized to solemnize a marriage or civil union in Québec, including ministers of religion and notaries.

The application for authorization to act as the officiant of a marriage or civil union is free of charge.

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Reviewed: 2019-03-27


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©Gouvernement du Québec, 2018

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