California Wedding Officiant FAQ
What does your fee include?
The Officiant will meet with you as a couple to get to know you a bit and allow you to share your ideas about the ceremony. He or she will then take your ideas and combine it with their ideas and experience to create a unique ceremony customized and personalized to fit you.
The Officiant will travel to the ceremony venue within a 60-mile radius of Brentwood CA. We will arrive approximately one hour before the ceremony start time in order to avoid any unanticipated travel delays and to consult with the DJ regarding microphone and sound check.
The Officiant will perform the ceremony in a professional manner that you and your guests will be proud of.
The Officiant will satisfy the legal obligation to submit the Marriage License with the County Clerk, either in person or via Certified Mail. We will send a digital Un-Official copy of the completed Marriage License to you as soon as possible.
We offer a Souvenir/Keepsake Marriage Certificates suitable for framing on request.
Where does the initial meeting take place?
We typically look for a coffee shop that is equidistant and mutually convenient for us to get together. That way there is a table and chairs, not to mention WiFi. A side benefit it that there is always fresh coffee and snacks available.
What Authorization/Credentials do you have for performing Wedding Ceremonies?
In the state of California, a Wedding Officiant is someone who is ordained by an approved organization and therefore authorized by the state to formally conduct officially recognized wedding ceremonies and to certify the marriage license. We are Ordained and Certified by the Universal Life Church.
Do you do Religious or non-Religious wedding ceremonies?
We do both. The Universal Life church does not espouse any particular dogma other than their motto, “We are all children of the same universe”. Our own personal view is that all paths lead to the same place. We have done Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Atheist wedding ceremonies. We will work with you find the right spiritual content based on your backgrounds and beliefs.
How far are you willing to travel?
Our standard fee includes travel within a sixty-mile radius of Brentwood CA 94513. If you want us to perform your ceremony in the Caribbean or Hawaii that would be great. Of course we will need a plane ticket and will have to adjust the fee. We also have to be sure that the local jurisdiction will recognize our credentials.
What is your payment schedule?
We ask for an $85 deposit to reserve and guarantee your date, and the balance due on the day of the ceremony. We accept Cash, Check, Bank Cards and PayPal.
How does the marriage license work?
The two of you will need to go together to the County Clerk’s office and apply in person. Call ahead to find out if you need an appointment and what you need to bring with you. You can get your license at any County Clerk in California and have the ceremony anywhere in California. Be sure to bring the license to the wedding ceremony. After the ceremony we will be sure that the witnesses sign it. We will then complete the form with our credential information and sign it as well. It is the officiant’s legal obligation to submit the license back to the same County Clerk where it was issued, within ten days.
Do you use a contract?
Yes, we have what we call a “Wedding Agreement” It simply spells out what our responsibilities are and what yours are as well. We can complete it in person on paper, or online.
What if the wedding doesn’t start on time?
It is quite common for wedding ceremonies to not start on time. Fifteen or twenty minutes in not a problem and almost to be expected. The officiant however often has other professional and personal commitments scheduled after the ceremony. If the wedding starts more than a half hour late, there are extra charges involved. Please give us the time that you actually expect the ceremony to take place so that we can accurately schedule around it. In some extreme cases the officiant may not be able to stay and complete the wedding.
What if our wedding is cancelled, postponed or rescheduled?
Since the deposit reserves your wedding date and time for you only, the initial deposit is always nonrefundable. If you reschedule your wedding to a date and time that we are available, we will apply the deposit to the new agreement. If you cancel your wedding altogether, there is no balance due beyond the initial deposit.
What if the officiant can’t make to the wedding due to illness or injury or another calamity?
Fortunately, it hasn’t happened yet. Although there was one time when we were sick with a nasty cold and showed up anyway. We will do our absolute best to find another officiant to do the job. If it doesn’t happen, you will receive a full refund including the deposit.
Should we invite you to the reception?
It is really nice of you to think of us but we never attend receptions. We won’t know anyone there besides the two of you, and it’s a time for you to celebrate with your family and friends. During the busy wedding season, We are often conducting two or three weddings each week. That would be a lot of partying if we went to them all.