What is it Like to Have a Notary Officiate Your Marriage in Quebec?


For couples interested in marriage in Quebec, there is always the option of having a notary officiate the ceremony. This option offers a lot of flexibility for couples who may not want a religious ceremony or those who are interested in some of the other services that a notary can provide.

If you’re currently in the process of planning your wedding, a notary can provide excellent services and work with you to make sure that your day flows exactly the way you envision.

So what is it life to have a notary officiate your marriage in Quebec?

There are some preliminary things which need to be done before having your marriage officiated. Here are some of the specifics you should know about choosing a notary to perform your ceremony.

Your Notary Provides Legal Consulting Services

A notary is legally recognized as a wedding officiate in Quebec but they can help you begin your married life in a few other ways, as well. They can provide counseling so that you are aware of all the legal requirements, helping to verify that all of the formalities are met for a legal union within the proper time frame. Your notary also helps you select your Matrimonial Regimes – essentially this sets the rules for your property and debts during the marriage and how they’ll be divided if the marriage ends through divorce or death. The notary also creates your summary of assets to legally declare each party’s property before they enter the marriage.

Your Notary Must Verify that You Are Legally Allowed to Be Married

Your notary will need to verify your ages, that there is no family relation, and that neither party is currently married or in a civil union to another party. This will include providing legal identification. If one or both parties are under 16, they must provide written parental consent for the union. In cases where one or both parties have been married prior, the judgment from the first marriage will need to be provided to prove divorce.

Your Notary Will Discuss the Date, Time, and Place for the Ceremony with You in Great Detail

Often you’ll need to set a good deal of time aside to have a lengthy discussion with your notary on the type of ceremony you would like. The notary will need to know the date, time, and place in advance because it will be listed on your Notice of Marriage, which needs to be published 20 days prior to the ceremony. During this meeting, you’ll be able to discuss the formalities of the union, list your witnesses, and go through the basic outline of the ceremony itself.

Your Notary Prepares and Submits Your Legal Documents

Your notary will publish the Notice of Marriage (or civil union) so that the legal requirements are met within the set time frame. They order the Declaration of Marriage form and verify that the document is completed and signed correctly to provide it to the Directeur de letat. For a civil union, they send the Return of Marriage form to the Insitut de la statistique  Québec. These steps verify that all of your legal requirements are met to make sure that your marriage is correct and legally binding.

Your Notary Will Provide a Summary and Additional Counseling

Hiring a notary means that they will provide you with a summary of each item that has been completed so that you’re assured all of the requirements have been met. They also make certain that both parties understand their rights and obligations to the marriage and provide counseling on steps to obtain your legal Marriage Certificate to keep for legal purposes after the union is finalized.