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This entry was published on 2019-01-04
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SECTION 11
By whom a marriage must be solemnized
Domestic Relations (DOM) CHAPTER 14, ARTICLE 3
§ 11. By whom a marriage must be solemnized. No marriage shall be
valid unless solemnized by either:

1. A clergyman or minister of any religion, or by the senior leader,
or any of the other leaders, of The Society for Ethical Culture in the
city of New York, having its principal office in the borough of
Manhattan, or by the leader of The Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture,
having its principal office in the borough of Brooklyn of the city of
New York, or of the Westchester Ethical Society, having its principal
office in Westchester county, or of the Ethical Culture Society of Long
Island, having its principal office in Nassau county, or of the
Riverdale-Yonkers Ethical Society having its principal office in Bronx
county, or by the leader of any other Ethical Culture Society affiliated
with the American Ethical Union; provided that no clergyman or minister
as defined in section two of the religious corporations law, or Society
for Ethical Culture leader shall be required to solemnize any marriage
when acting in his or her capacity under this subdivision.

1-a. A refusal by a clergyman or minister as defined in section two of
the religious corporations law, or Society for Ethical Culture leader to
solemnize any marriage under this subdivision shall not create a civil
claim or cause of action or result in any state or local government
action to penalize, withhold benefits or discriminate against such
clergyman or minister.

2. The current or a former governor, a mayor of a village, a county
executive of a county, or a mayor, recorder, city magistrate, police
justice or police magistrate of a city, a former mayor or the city clerk
of a city of the first class of over one million inhabitants or any of
his or her deputies or not more than four regular clerks, designated by
him or her for such purpose as provided in section eleven-a of this
article, except that in cities which contain more than one hundred
thousand and less than one million inhabitants, a marriage shall be
solemnized by the mayor, or police justice, and by no other officer of
such city, except as provided in subdivisions one and three of this
section.

2-a. A member of the New York state legislature, provided that such
person shall not charge or receive a fee.

3. A judge of the federal circuit court of appeals for the second
circuit, a judge of a federal district court for the northern, southern,
eastern or western district of New York, a judge of the United States
court of international trade, a federal administrative law judge
presiding in this state, a justice or judge of a court of the unified
court system, a housing judge of the civil court of the city of New
York, a retired justice or judge of the unified court system or a
retired housing judge of the civil court of the city of New York
certified pursuant to paragraph (k) of subdivision two of section two
hundred twelve of the judiciary law, the clerk of the appellate division
of the supreme court in each judicial department, a retired city clerk
who served for more than ten years in such capacity in a city having a
population of one million or more or a county clerk of a county wholly
within cities having a population of one million or more; or,

3-a. A judge or peacemaker judge of any Indian tribal court, a chief,
a headman, or any member of any tribal council or other governing body
of any nation, tribe or band of Indians in this state duly designated by
such body for the purpose of officiating at marriages, or any other
persons duly designated by such body, in keeping with the culture and
traditions of any such nation, tribe or band of Indians in this state,
to officiate at marriages.

4. A written contract of marriage signed by both parties and at least
two witnesses, all of whom shall subscribe the same within this state,
stating the place of residence of each of the parties and witnesses and
the date and place of marriage, and acknowledged before a judge of a
court of record of this state by the parties and witnesses in the manner
required for the acknowledgment of a conveyance of real estate to
entitle the same to be recorded.

5. Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, where either
or both of the parties is under the age of eighteen years a marriage
shall be solemnized only by those authorized in subdivision one of this
section or by (1) the mayor of a city or village, or county executive of
a county, or by (2) a judge of the federal circuit court of appeals for
the second circuit, a judge of a federal district court for the
northern, southern, eastern or western district of New York, a judge of
the United States court of international trade, or a justice or a judge
of a court of the unified court system, or by (3) a housing judge of the
civil court of the city of New York, or by (4) a former mayor or the
clerk of a city of the first class of over one million inhabitants or
any of his or her deputies designated by him or her for such purposes as
provided in section eleven-a of this chapter.

6. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this article to the
contrary no marriage shall be solemnized by a public officer specified
in this section, other than a judge of a federal district court for the
northern, southern, eastern or western district of New York, a judge of
the United States court of international trade, a federal administrative
law judge presiding in this state, a judge or justice of the unified
court system of this state, a housing judge of the civil court of the
city of New York, or a retired judge or justice of the unified court
system or a retired housing judge of the civil court certified pursuant
to paragraph (k) of subdivision two of section two hundred twelve of the
judiciary law, nor by any of the persons specified in subdivision
three-a of this section, outside the territorial jurisdiction in which
he or she was elected, appointed or duly designated. Such a public
officer, however, elected or appointed within the city of New York may
solemnize a marriage anywhere within such city.

7. The term "clergyman" or "minister" when used in this article, shall
include those defined in section two of the religious corporations law.
The word "magistrate, " when so used, includes any person referred to in
the second or third subdivision.