Family, friends can now officiate your wedding in Alberta

The Alberta government has made changes it says will make it easier for a family member or friend to officiate a wedding in the province.

A pilot project is underway in Alberta that removes some of the barriers for people seeking to serve as a temporary marriage commissioner.

The new guidelines specify that any Canadian resident who is 18 years or older can apply to perform a civil (non-religious) marriage ceremony for family or friends within Alberta.

The temporary appointment lasts for just one day, and the person cannot charge a fee to perform the ceremony. The guidelines also state the person performing the ceremony cannot represent themselves as a permanent marriage commissioner or advertise for business.

The government said the pilot project, which launched in November 2019, was a direct response to Albertans’ feedback that there were too many restrictions around who could serve as a temporary marriage commissioner.

“We will be evaluating the pilot project this spring and will determine any next steps,” Service Alberta spokesperson Tricia Velthuizen said in an email to Global News.

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