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Rhode Island approves new one-day marriage designation

Published Wednesday, Jul. 21st, 2021

Cover image via the State of Rhode Island General Assembly

Starting January 1 of next year, adults in Rhode Island will be able to apply for a temporary, one-day authorization to perform a marriage ceremony. 


The application process will cost $25, and will be available in person, by mail, and online.


After approval, the applicant will be issued a temporary certificate, allowing them to solemnize a marriage in a specific town on a specific day -- becoming one-time wedding officiants.


(Online ordination with AMM is free and legally recognized in Rhode Island.)

As described in H 5034 (Sub A), the following text will be added to Section 15-3-5 of Rhode Island’s marriage laws, “Officials empowered to join persons in marriage” : 



In addition to the foregoing, the governor shall designate, upon application, any person eighteen (18) years or older to solemnize a particular marriage on a particular date and in a particular city or town, and may for cause at any time revoke such designation. In the case of persons so designated by the governor, the secretary of state shall promulgate rules and regulations as may be necessary to implement and carry out the provisions of this section. The secretary of state shall issue a certificate of designation upon payment of twenty8 five dollars ($25.00) for applications delivered by mail, facsimile or hand. All applications submitted electronically shall pay a fee of twenty dollars ($20.00). Upon payment, a certificate of designation shall be issued within twenty-one (21) days. The certificate shall expire upon completion of the solemnization. The fees collected under this section shall be deposited into the general fund.


This act goes into effect on January 1, 2022. 


You’ll be able to review this change on our website, along with other Rhode Island Marriage Laws



Friends and family members can already perform wedding ceremonies in Rhode Island, as long as they're ordained. Online ordination is simple and free.






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Jessica Levey
Jessica Levey

Lead Staff Writer & Illustrator

Jessica loves exploring the history and magic of ritual, the connections between people and places, and sharing true stories about love and commitment. She's an advocate for marriage equality, LGBTQ+ rights, and individuality, and is an ordained Minister with AMM. When she’s not writing or illustrating for AMM, she enjoys city hikes, fantasy novels, comics, and traveling.

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