Religious marriage takes place within the context of religion. Unlike some other countries, Quebec does not require having a civil marriage following a religious marriage in order to have it recognized.
If the conditions for getting married are met, a religious marriage officiated by an authorized minister of religion has the same legal value as a civil marriage.
The religious marriage celebrant
Ministers of religion (or religious marriage celebrants) have the right to officiate marriages and civil unions. They must be authorized by a religious corporation that is recognized by the Quebec Director of Civil Status.
The religious celebrant is a religious representative such as a:
- other recognized minister of worship
Checking that your religious celebrant is authorized
It is possible to check that a civil or religious celebrant is indeed authorized to celebrate marriage on the Register of Celebrants. We are frequently contacted by couples who have been “married” by an unauthorized celebrant. Their marriage is then null and void, and we proceed with the civil and legal marriage of the spouses.
If you wish to have a religious marriage performed by a minister of worship who does not have the authorization required to formalize a marriage, you can have the civil marriage performed just before or just after the religious ceremony, so that the marriage is valid and legal.
Learn about the matrimonial regimes
A religious celebrant who is not a legal advisor (notary or lawyer) cannot give you legal advice on the matrimonial regimes. Mtre Salehi can give you a legal consultation on the matrimonial regimes if you have your marriage celebrated religiously. You will then be able to choose a matrimonial regime fully informed.
Whether to make a marriage contract
A marriage contract is a legal document that allows you to choose a matrimonial regime. Mtre Salehi and her team can draw up your marriage contract before or after your marriage. If you make a marriage contract before the date of your marriage it will take effect on your wedding day.