The following guidelines on becoming a Marriage Officer are taken from the Office of the Registrar General:
In order to qualify to become a Marriage Officer of the Island of Jamaica, one must be a Minister of Religion. Upon recommendation by the Registrar General, the Minister to which he/she reports, will appoint a marriage officer. Notification of all such appointments is made via the Gazette.
A Minister of Religion who desires to become a Marriage Officer must first submit the following to the Registrar General:
- A letter of application in his / her own handwriting. This must include the address of the church or churches and the number of members in the congregation(s).
- Birth certificate
- Any documents noting a change of name (such as deed polls, marriage certificates or adoption certificates)
- One (1) passport sized photograph
- One (1) letter of recommendation from the head of denomination of the applicant
- Two (2) letters of recommendation from two other ministers of religion who are currently Marriage Officers
Once all of the above-mentioned have been received, then the following occurs:
- The applicant is interviewed and a test is administered where necessary. The applicant is usually exempt from this test with a minimum qualification of a first degree.
- If successful in the interview (and test), the police will then be requested to verify the suitability of the place of worship and character.
- If the police report is favourable, then a recommendation for appointment will be submitted to the Ministry of Health for approval and gazetting.
Upon receipt of the Gazette of appointments for Marriage Officer of the Island of Jamaica, the RGD then contacts the Marriage Officer and invites him/her to a training seminar where he / she will receive:
- Training on all aspects of the marriage act including role play.
- A marriage officer’s identification
- Marriage Act
- Marriage Manual
- A fee is usually charged for the seminar
After this the marriage officer will then receive marriage registers and the requisite forms to conduct a marriage.