WEDDING OFFICIANT

/WEDDING OFFICIANT
WEDDING OFFICIANT 2017-09-20T03:45:20+00:00

Got a question?

What information do we need for our marriage license? 2017-09-16T14:10:51+00:00

In Minnesota, as per MN § 517.08:

  • Full legal names
  • Dates of birth
  • Places of birth
  • Social security numbers (if one has been issued)
  • Current ages
  • Current address to include the county where that address is located
  • Any previous marriage information (i.e., date of divorce, county, and state where it took place, name of court, date of death); no divorce documents are required
  • Legal name after marriage
  • Address after marriage

In Wisconsin, as per WI § 765.09:

  • Photo ID, such as a driver’s license, state ID card, Passport, etc.
  • Proof of residency for the past 30 days. Application must be made in the county where either the bride or groom is a resident. If both parties live outside of Wisconsin, you must apply in the county where the ceremony will take place.
  • Social security numbers (if one has been issued)
  • Certified copy of birth certificates.
  • If previously married; death certificate, divorce judgement papers (a six-month waiting period is required after your divorce before you can apply for a marriage license) or court annulment certificate.
  • If you are under the age of 18, a consent form must be signed by both parents or legal guardian.
  • Application must be made between 5 and 30 days prior to the wedding (not more than 30 days before, and not less than 5 days before).
  • Fee: $100.00
  • Both of the parties must make application in person.
  •  Bride and groom should be prepared to let the County Clerk’s Office know the date of the wedding ceremony, what county they will be married in, what municipality (city, village or township), name of the officiant, officiant mailing address and telephone number.
How long is the marriage license valid? 2017-09-16T13:54:03+00:00

In Minnesota: 6 months.

In Wisconsin: 30 days.

Does Minnesota or Wisconsin recognize Common Law marriages? 2017-09-16T13:46:01+00:00

Nope.

(Minnesota abolished common law marriages in 1941.)

Do we need a blood test before we get married? 2017-09-16T13:41:24+00:00

No. Blood tests or physicals are not required.

Who prepares the marriage certificate? 2017-09-16T13:31:27+00:00

One of the honors of officiating a wedding is preparing, signing, and delivering the marriage certificate to the county registrar’s office. In Minnesota the marriage certificate needs to be filed within 5 days; in Wisconsin, filed within three days.

(MN § 517.10)

(WI§ 765.19)

If your credentials are in Minnesota, how can you officiate weddings in Wisconsin? 2017-09-16T13:40:02+00:00

Letters of Sponsorship are no longer required effective April 25, 2014, with the enactment and publication 2013 Wisconsin Act 372. As such, under WI § 765.15 there is no requirement for an officiating person to file credentials within the state of Wisconsin.

And, if you’re curious, the Wisconsin Attorney General says this:

“Ministers or clergy ordained or appointed through the internet may solemnize marriages if they meet the requirements of § 765.15 or § 765.17. The statute does not permit, and the Constitution of the United States may prohibit, inquiry into the method of ordination or appointment.”

How many witnesses do we need? 2017-09-16T12:46:37+00:00

In Minnesota: you need the signatures of at least two witnesses and they have to be at least 16 years old. (MN § 517.10)

In Wisconsin: you need the signatures of at least two adult witnesses. (WI § 765.16(1m))

Do you charge for mileage? 2017-09-16T12:23:24+00:00

If your wedding is outside of the Twin Cities metro area, yes. Depending on location (and state) the fee is comparable to the 53.5¢ per mile federal mileage guidelines. Keep in mind the mileage fee also compensates for vehicle maintenance, fuel, and time spent in commute.

Where do you perform ceremonies? 2017-09-16T12:16:58+00:00

Anywhere in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Yes, the entire states! This includes: backyards, wedding halls, Masonic Temples, lake fronts, carnival rides, boats… The list is endless! Succinctly: wherever you and your partner feel most comfortable.

What are your credentials? 2017-09-16T12:13:22+00:00

In accordance with § 517.05, I’ve been a legally ordained minister in Minnesota since 2007 with Universal Ministries. My ordination papers are on file at the St. Louis County registrar’s office.

While I was baptized and confirmed in an Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, I identify as a Unitarian Universalist.

How much does a marriage license cost? 2017-09-16T12:11:32+00:00

A marriage license costs $115.00 and is due at time of application… Unless you’ve taken 12 hours or more of pre-marital classes. If you and your partner have participated in at least 12 hours of pre-marital counseling the cost is $40, due at the time of application, in addition to a dated and notarized Educator’s Statement. (MN § 517.08)

How can we secure you for our wedding date? 2017-09-15T22:26:20+00:00

To hold your date a nonrefundable deposit of half your package is required.

Do we need to sign a contract? 2017-09-15T22:24:16+00:00

No. A contract is not required. However, if you’d feel more secure with a contract, we can do that too.

Can we meet before we decide you’re the officiant we want? 2017-09-15T22:22:09+00:00

I’d love that! Let me buy you a cup of coffee or a slice of pie.

Can we write our own ceremony? 2017-09-15T22:16:57+00:00

Of course! I’m happy to help and guide you, but above all the ceremony needs to resonate with you.

Can we customize our ceremony? 2017-09-15T22:06:07+00:00

Yes, please!

How many different ceremonies do you have? 2017-09-15T22:00:48+00:00

Every ceremony is different because every couple is different. Each ceremony is crafted based on interactions with the couple and the couples’ reflections on their story.

Are there any hidden charges? 2017-09-15T22:01:58+00:00

Nope.

Both Christian and I have had some reservations with finding an officiant (why we’ve probably waited until two-months before our wedding) and [after meeting Michael] we feel so much more at ease now. We’re actually super excited now!! Before we saw the ceremony as something we just needed to get through – Christian and I are both not big into being the center of attention for things (like he said, he’s not big into ceremonial type of things). Now we are really looking forward to what [Michael] comes up with. We are so looking forward to having you be a part of the wedding.

For real. Thank YOU for everything. You were above and beyond what we were expecting and fit right into the group which we were so hoping for. We super appreciate EVERYTHING you have done for us!

Daniela & Christian

VERY SPECIAL THANK YOU to Michael Venske for performing the MOST MEMORABLE LOVING CEREMONY!!!

Denise & Terry

…god did he make it entertaining, and do such an amazing job as our minister!

People still comment on how good of a job he did officiating.

(Thank you so much, Mike! You did an amazing job! We wouldn’t have it done any other way. We love you so much!)

Courtney & MJ

Michael gave our ceremony the kind of warm personal touch we had really hoped for.

He also dispelled our nerves with some well placed humor during the vows.

Above all he kept the day focused on us as a couple and the commitment we were making to one another.

Jennifer & Aaron

When it came time to decide who would officiate our wedding Sean and I knew we wanted to do something non-traditional.

I thought, “Mike is an actor, he can play a man of the cloth for me!”

Months later Mike married me…to my husband.

He wrote the most amazing “sermon” designed just for us. He compared marriage to a road trip and our love to the force of Lake Superior lapping against the rocks. He made our day what it was meant to be.

I am so very happy he can share his talents with many happy couples on their special day.

Jess & Sean