At the marriage or civil union ceremony
To ensure the validity of the marriage or civil union you solemnize, you must complete four legal steps during the ceremony:
- read a legal text including articles of the Civil Code of Québec, in the presence of two witnesses;
- ask both intended spouses to state their consent to the marriage or civil union;
- state that the spouses are now married or in a civil union;
- have the spouses sign the declaration of marriage or declaration of civil union that you have already prepared.
Legal text and consent
The legal text you must read out loud varies, depending on whether you are solemnizing a marriage or a civil union.
Consent to the marriage or civil union
After reading the legal text, you must ask each intended spouse if he or she consents to be joined by marriage or civil union to the other spouse. The statement of consent must be confirmed by witnesses.
This step must be done in either French or English, as requested by the couple. If one of the intended spouses does not understand either language, the couple may hire an interpreter.
If you need an interpreter, you can contact the Ordre des traducteurs, terminologues et interprètes agréés du Québec.
Signing of the declaration
At the end of the ceremony, you must ask the couple and the witnesses to sign:
- the declaration of marriage or declaration of civil union;
- the return of marriage or return of civil union.
You should take the time to prepare the forms before the ceremony, and ask the couple to check for any mistakes.
After the spouses have signed, you must sign the declaration of marriage or civil union and enter the date of the ceremony.