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Hotline Tip: How Do I Perform A Marriage Ceremony?

NNA Hotline Tips For NotariesI’m a Florida Notary. My stepson is getting married and wants me to do the ceremony. Can you explain to me what we need to do for me to perform the ceremony? — C.P., Orlando, FL

Florida Notaries are authorized to perform marriage ceremonies. In Florida, unless the Notary is also a clergy member, the Notary-performed marriage is a civil ceremony (FS 117.045 and 741.07[1]).

The Notary must ensure that the couple presents a valid marriage license from a county court judge or clerk of the circuit court. The Notary may then perform the ceremony within the boundaries of the state (2001 RMN, p.16). Finally, the Notary is responsible for completing the certificate on the appropriate portion of the marriage license. The Notary must then return the license to the office of the county court judge or clerk of the circuit that issued the license within 10 days after the marriage is performed (FS 741.08).

Note that while Florida law prohibits Notaries from performing other types of notarizations for spouses, sons, daughters, mothers or fathers (FS 117.107[11]), an Attorney General opinion says Notaries may perform marriage ceremonies for someone related to the Notary by blood or marriage. For details on performing the ceremony, please see the Governor’s Reference Manual For Notaries, page 16.

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. –The Editors

 

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

13 Comments

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tanya

21 Jan 2015

The notary does not need to take in the the court in florida the couple can or mail it.

susan Waterbury

28 Jun 2016

The notary marriage kit mentioned in this e-mail is not on the link. Please let me know how I can get the kit. I have been asked to solidify a marriage for a co-worker and I have no idea what to do.

National Notary Association

12 Jul 2016

Hello. We're sorry, the marriage kit is no longer available. We've updated the story to remove the link. Sorry for any confusion.

Mercedes

11 Apr 2017

Can I notarize a marriage license without performing the "ceremony"? I've been asked to notarize a marriage license but the couple have some one else performing the ceremony.

National Notary Association

12 Apr 2017

Hello. If you are referring to the certificate of marriage, the answer is no. In Florida, the certificate of marriage must be completed by the Notary who performed the wedding ceremony.

Billie

27 Nov 2017

Since same-sex marriage is now legal in Florida can a notary perform the ceremony?

National Notary Association

27 Nov 2017

Yes, Florida Notaries are authorized to perform marriage ceremonies. For more information, please see this article: https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2015/01/same-sex-ruling-florida-notaries

Stephanie

01 Mar 2018

Can I, A Florida Notary, just notarize the marriage license/certificate to make the marriage legal or does the HAVE to be a ceremony? IF there has to be a ceremony what are the requirements for that?

National Notary Association

05 Mar 2018

Hello. No, the required information must be completed by the person completing the ceremony. For more information, please see here: https://www.flgov.com/marriage_ceremonies/

Nidia Isa

22 Feb 2019

Does the notary has to personally send or take the certificate to the office of the court or can the couple take it in?

National Notary Association

22 Feb 2019

Hello. To help us answer your question, can you please tell us what state you are commissioned in?

Jacqueline Sanchez

15 Jun 2019

Can we marry othera in California with only my Notary Public commission?

National Notary Association

18 Jun 2019

Hello. No, a California Notary commission does not provide authority to conduct weddings.

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