Minister Licensing Requirements in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico

Minister Required to Register with Commonwealth Laws of Puerto Rico 243

Minimum Minister Age: 18 Years

Minister's Residency: Irrelevant

Same-Sex Marriage Recognized: Yes

Minister Registration Requirements
Required by the Demographic Registry

  1. Ordination Certificate
  2. Letter of Good Standing
  3. Photo ID
  4. 2x2 Photo
  5. $25 IRS Stamp
  6. The Couple
Application Fee: $25

Minister Licensing Office
Minister are Required to Register with the:

Please select a county to view their specific contact information.

How to Perform Marriage

1. Become an Ordained Minister

American Marriage Ministries is a non-profit, interfaith and non-denominational church with the mission to ensure that all people have the right to perform marriage. We offer ordination to all people, regardless of religious background or spiritual philosophy, that agree with our three tenets:

  1. All people, regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation, have the right to marry.
  2. It is the right of every couple to choose who will solemnize their marriage.
  3. All people have the right to solemnize marriage.

Applying to become an AMM Minister is not a declaration of exclusive faith; it is an act of fellowship, allowing our tenets to coexist with personal beliefs. We believe that people of all backgrounds can find community within the simple tenets of our faith.

About Our Ordination

The AMM ordination is free, requires no special course of study, and takes only a moment. Our goal is to help people on their path to performing marriage for friends and family.

The act of solemnizing marriage historically belonged to the people, and only recently has it become the domain of the state. A marriage is a momentus spiritual event, but the legal act of solemnizing marriage is nothing more than signing a piece of paper; a task that does not necessitate the time, expense, and academia of a traditional seminarial degree.

If you have been asked by people close to you to solemnize their marriage, we believe you have the right to.

2. Prepare for Performing Marriage

Preparing to officiate a wedding involves two major steps:

  1. Complying with any applicable government regulations.
  2. Preparing what you will say for the ceremony.

We will discuss both steps below, but to fully utilize our resources we recommend that you register the wedding that you will perform with the AMM Wedding Helper - a free tool for AMM Ministers.

a. Minister Licensing Requirements

Minister registration is required in Puerto Rico. You do not need to be a Puerto Rico resident to perform marriage, though you must be at least 18 years of age.

Before performing marriage, you must register with the Demographic Registry Office in Old San Juan. You will be required to present the following documents to register:

  1. Ordination Certificate
  2. Letter of Good Standing
  3. Photo ID
  4. 2x2 Photo
  5. $25 IRS Stamp
  6. The Couple

To satisfy the Ordination Certificate and Letter of Good Standing requirements, we recommend that you order your Puerto Rico Minister Licensing Package.

Application Instructions

1. Collect your 2x2 photograph, photo ID, and ministerial documents (Ordination Certificate and Letter of Good Standing).

2. Before going to the Demographic Registry Office, you must first obtain a $25 money order or IRS Stamp from the local IRS Office:

Departamento de Hacienda
10 Paseo Covadonga
San Juan PR 00901

An IRS stamp or money order are the only forms of payment accepted for your registration fee at the Demographic Registry Office. The couple must also use a $150 stamp or money order to pay for their marriage license.

3. Once you and the couple have your payment and all other required items ready, you must appear together (couple & minister) at the Demographic Registry Office:

Demographic Registry
500 Ochoa Bld Tanca St
Old San Juan, Puerto Rico 00902

There you can present your documentation and register as an officiant. The couple can file for their marriage license at the same time.

With all the appropriate parties present and necessary documents in hand, the registration process should take no more than a few hours.

b. Preparing the Ceremony

Many AMM Ministers get ordained to perform their first marriage and are often unsure of the process. Aside from legal concerns, the biggest fear most people have is public speaking. Plan ahead, practice, and you will do a great job!

A typical wedding ceremony is only 10 - 20 minutes and follows a time tested format. When you speak, remember that you were personally chosen by the couple, and that the most important two people already have faith in your ability. Weddings are a celebration with friends and family – the best audience anyone could ask for.

If you have never conducted a wedding or are simply want to refresh your knowledge, visit the Wedding Training section.

Our resources are here to walk you through a wedding ceremony, discussing structure, providing samples, and more.

Every wedding is unique, and the couple will want to personalize the format of their ceremony. Since you already know them, you should have no trouble collaborating and choosing your words for the ceremony.

Once the script is set, we highly recommend that you rehearse the ceremony by yourself and in front of friends. With enough practice, you will be fully prepared to confidently officiate your first wedding.

3. Officiate the Wedding

By this point you should be fully prepared to officiate. Perform the ceremony and have fun!

Handling the Marriage License

After the ceremony it is time for official recordkeeping. The couple will present their marriage license for you and the witnesses. The minister's job is to look over the license, confirm that the information is accurate, and complete the officiant's section.

In the eyes of the state, solemnizing marriage is the act of administering a contract (the marriage license) between two people.

Marriage licenses vary dramatically in appearance, but all ask for a similar set of information. Our How to Complete a Marriage License page explains all of the details that may be required on a marriage license.

Once completed, you or the couple must return the license to its office of issuance (usually by mail). In Puerto Rico, completed marriage licenses must be returned within 10 days of the wedding. The license is then recorded by the state and the marriage becomes a legal binding contract.

About the Marriage License (FOR THE COUPLE)

* This information is not for the minister but for the couple, and is included for reference.


Couples getting married in Puerto Rico must file for a marriage license with the Demographic Registry's office before their wedding day. The state will not recognize a marriage without a marriage license.


Puerto Rico Marriage License Info:

Issuing Office: Demographic Registry

Statewide License Cost: $150*

Waiting Period: None

Expiration: No Expiration

Return: 10 Days from Wedding


Waiting Period: The minimum amount of time the couple must wait to get married from the date that they are granted their marriage license.

Expiration: The amount of time that the marriage license is valid from its issuance date.

Return: The amount of time that the completed marriage license must be returned after the wedding.


More Information on Filing for the Marriage License in Puerto Rico
  1. Although there is no waiting period for filing for the marriage license please allow two months to receive your marriage license from the time you file from the Demographic Registry Office - they operate on island time.
  2. If you are a Puerto Rican resident, you will have to take a VDRL (Venereal Disease Research Laboratory) blood test within ten days of the wedding.
  3. If you are not a Puerto Rican resident you do not have to take the blood test, however you will need to provide a sworn statement that you are not a Puerto Rican resident.
  4. The marriage license costs $30, however those $30 need to be paid in the form of "License Stamps". This means that before filing for the marriage license you will need to go to a local "Colectura" (Puerto Rican IRS equivalent) to obtain $30 worth of license stamps.

That’s all there is to it!

As of October 17th, 2017, American Marriage Ministries has ordained 52 AMM Ministers in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, who have registered 45 weddings. What's This?

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Laws of Puerto Rico

Solemnization Of Marriage

243 Authorization and celebration of marriage--Who may celebrate

All regularly licensed or ordained priests or other ministers of the Gospel, Jewish rabbis, and the judges of the Supreme Court, judges of the Appeals Court, judges of the Court of First Instance, the judges of the United States District Court for Puerto Rico, may celebrate the marriage rites between all persons legally authorized to marry.

Title 31: Civil Code - Sub Title 1: Persons - Part III: Marriage - Chapter 31: Requisites Necessary to Contract Marriage

HISTORY: Civil Code, 1930, § 75; July 18, 1996, No. 72, § 1; Jan. 5, 2000, No. 16, § 1.

Solemnization Of Marriage

243 Authorization and celebration of marriage--Who may celebrate

All regularly licensed or ordained priests or other ministers of the Gospel, Jewish rabbis, and the judges of the Supreme Court, judges of the Appeals Court, judges of the Court of First Instance, the judges of the United States District Court for Puerto Rico, may celebrate the marriage rites between all persons legally authorized to marry.

Title 31: Civic Code - Sub Title 1: Persons - Part III: Marriage - Chapter 31: Requisites Necessary to Contract Marriage

Minister Licensing Requirements in:

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