Becoming a Marriage Commissioner
The Vital Statistics Agency began the private marriage commissioner program in British Columbia in 1982 to give couples an alternative to courthouse civil services. Today, marriage commissioners perform more than half of the approximately 22,000 marriages that take place in B.C. each year.
The Vital Statistics Agency appoints marriage commissioners for an initial 5-year term with one 5-year renewal. Because of the amount of training involved, the Agency does not provide temporary appointments.
Role of a Marriage Commissioner
A marriage commissioner:
- advises the couple of the legal requirements of marriage ceremonies
- maintains the dignity and solemnity of the marriage occasion; and
- provides couples with flexible options for their special day. For example, there are no restrictions on time and location of the ceremony, and couples can write their own vows or include special requests in the ceremony
The Vital Statistics Agency does not authorize marriage commissioners to provide wedding planning, or consultation services.
Who can be a Marriage Commissioner?
Marriage commissioners must live in the community where they perform marriage ceremonies. Generally, candidates for the position are:
- retired or semi-retired
- not involved in activities that might be considered a conflict of interest
- known and active in their community
- mature, articulate, self-reliant and well-groomed
- able to provide their own transportation
- connected to and knowledgeable about Internet use; and
- comfortable with a flexible, “on-demand” work style that includes weekends and evenings
All vacancies for marriage commissioners in B.C. are advertised here. Check this page regularly for vacancies in your area but apply only when we post a vacancy, as we do not keep applicant information on file.
Four-Step Application Process
If there is a vacancy shown above in your area, follow these steps to apply for the position:
- Click on the community name to download the application form.
- Print the application form.
- Complete the application form by hand.
- Submit the application form:
Marriage Commissioner Program
Vital Statistics Agency
Ministry of Health
PO Box 9657 Stn Prov Govt
Note: Applications received by email after the closing date or by mail with a post mark after the closing date are not considered.