How to Register and Perform a Wedding By State
If you are either planning to be married or have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in Oregon, you've come to the right page. Ordained ministers with Open Ministry have successfully performed thousands of legal marriages in Oregon and around the world!
The information provided below is designed to walk you through the most common steps to become a minister and perform a wedding ceremony in Oregon.
Step 1 - How to Become Ordained
How to become an Ordained Minister in Oregon
Ordination is completely free and can be completed in less than a few hours. Thousands of ministers have registered to perform marriages in Oregon and other states each year!
If you haven't already, you should get ordained online with Open Ministry.
Get started today by clicking on the link below!
Step 2 - Contact The County Clerk
How to Register to Officiate a Marriage in Oregon
Next, you should contact the office of your local marriage authority (typically your county clerk) in Oregon. Let them know that you are a minister of Open Ministry in California, and ask what they will require of you to officiate a legal marriage in Oregon.
When speaking with the county clerk; it can be helpful to use the following phrases.
- What agency or department issues marriage licenses in your county and how may I contact them?
- I am an ordained minister with a church in California and I would like to register as a wedding Officiant in your county to perform and solemnize weddings.
- I have my Letter of Good Standing and/or Ordination Credential as proof of my ministry and ordination.
- What additional documentation is required for me to register as a wedding Officiant in your county?
Step 3 - Getting Licensed to Perform the Marriage
License to perform a wedding in Oregon
After you've contacted your marriage authority, you should visit our bookstore to purchase your official credentials and any required documentation (See Oregon State Statutes for More Specific Requirements )
When registering in Oregon you may be asked to display proof of your ordination to the county clerk's before they will accept the marriage license as having been legally solemnized. We typically advise ministers of Oregon to get a Complete Minister Package for Oregon which includes your Letter of Good Standing.
Having your ordination credentials will also provide peace-of-mind to any couple that you intend to marry. Additionally, we recommend that you have at least 4 weeks between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials in time to register.
It is important to note that some county clerks in Oregon may require wedding officiants to attach a statement avowing some of the elements in the marriage license upon submission, including the following:
- The time and location at which the wedding took place
- The names and places of residence of all official witnesses
- The religious organization in which the officiant is ordained
- The printed name and address of the officiant
Please note that, when filling out a marriage license, that Oregon State may request you use the title "Minister" or "Reverend". The County Clerks may also require you enter your denomination, you can use "Non-Denominational". Failing to state a denomination may result in rejection and could require a duplicate marriage license.
106.120 Who may solemnize marriage; fee; personal payment; records
(1) As used in this section, "judicial officer" means:
(a) A judicial officer of this state as that term is defined in ORS 1.210 and includes but is not limited to a judge of a municipal court and a justice of the peace.
(b) An active judge of a federal court.
(c) An active United States magistrate judge.
(2) Marriages may be solemnized by:
(a) A judicial officer;
(b) A county clerk;
(c) Religious congregations or organizations as indicated in ORS 106.150 (2); or
(d) A clergyperson of any religious congregation or organization who is authorized by the congregation or organization to solemnize marriages.
(3) A person authorized to solemnize marriages under subsection (2) of this section may solemnize a marriage anywhere in this state.
(4)(a) When a marriage is solemnized by a tax, appellate or circuit judge of this state, the clerk of the court or the county clerk shall collect a fee of $25 and deposit the fee in the Judicial Department Operating Account established in ORS 1.009.
(b) When a marriage is solemnized by a county clerk, the county clerk shall collect a fee of $25, as provided in ORS 205.320.
(c) The fee described in this subsection may be collected only if:
(A) The marriage is solemnized during normal working hours, excluding holidays;
(B) The marriage is solemnized in court facilities or a county clerk's office; or
(C) More than a minimal amount of staff time or other court or county clerk's office resources are used in connection with the solemnization.
(d) The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court or the county clerk may establish a written procedure for waiver of the fee required under this subsection in exigent circumstances, including but not limited to indigency of the parties to the marriage.
(5) In addition to any fee collected under subsection (4) of this section, a judicial officer of this state and a county clerk may charge and accept an agreed upon personal payment not to exceed $100 plus actual costs for the solemnization of a marriage if that solemnization is performed:
(a) At a place other than the courthouse where the judicial officer or county clerk serves; or
(b) Outside of the judicial officer's or county clerk's normal working hours.
(6) The charging and accepting of a personal payment by a judicial officer of this state or a county clerk under subsection (5) of this section does not constitute a violation of any of the provisions of ORS chapter 244.
(7) The amount of actual costs charged by a judicial officer of this state or a county clerk under subsection (5) of this section may not exceed:
(a) Actual expenses for food and lodging as verified by receipts.
(b) If travel is made by personal vehicle, the actual number of round-trip miles from the judicial officer's or county clerk's home or office, whichever is greater, compensated at the rate of reimbursement then provided by the State of Oregon to its employees or, if travel is made by a commercial carrier, reimbursement shall be made of the actual costs thereof, verified by receipts.
(8) A judicial officer of this state or a county clerk shall maintain records of the amount of personal payments received for performing marriages, of actual costs and the supporting documentation related thereto for a period of four years.
(9) The parties to a marriage solemnized by a tax, appellate or circuit judge of this state shall show to the judge proof of payment of the fee required under subsection (4)(a) of this section before solemnization. Except as provided in subsection (4)(d) of this section, the judge may not solemnize a marriage without proof of payment of the fee.
Volume 3 - Title 11: Domestic Relations - Chapter 106: Marriage
[Amended by 1971 c.621 Â§22; 1975 c.607 Â§22; 1977 c.518 Â§2; 1979 c.724 Â§3; 1979 c.833 Â§24; 1981 c.176 Â§1; 1991 c.282 Â§1; 1991 c.458 Â§1; 1997 c.424 Â§1; 1999 c.776 Â§1; 2001 c.501 Â§1; 2003 c.565 Â§1; 2003 c.737 Â§111]