Civil Weddings

Justice of the Peace program updates

Due to the high volume of applications, we are not accepting any more applications till further notice.

Those who have applied prior to October 1, 2016 will be contacted via email and advised of next steps.

NEW: In May 2016, government announced a number of improvements to the Civil Weddings Program. We are now accepting applications from Nova Scotians who wish to become Justices of the Peace. To apply, please submit the application below and your resume to the Department of Justice. If you have any questions, please contact us at .

Please note that we have received a high volume of applications for the Administrative Justice of the Peace program. Please feel free to submit your application, yet interviews for applicants who screen in will not proceed until the Fall of 2016. If you have any questions about the civil wedding program, or your application, please e-mail

Administrative Justice of the Peace application form

In Nova Scotia, civil wedding ceremonies can be performed by:

  • a Judge of the Family Court or Provincial Court
  • a Justice of the Supreme Court
  • a Justice of the Peace

To be able to perform a wedding ceremony, Justices of the Peace (or JPs as they are more commonly known) must complete a Nova Scotia Department of Justice training course. They must also be registered with the Department of Business and Consumer Services. A list of those authorized to perform wedding ceremonies is available at any Justice Centre or with any issuer of marriage licences. JPs are listed by county but are authorized to perform ceremonies in any county in the province.

Weddings in Justice Centres

If you want your ceremony to be performed in a Justice Centre, just contact one of the Justice Centres. There is a designated marriage scheduler at each Justice Centre who can assist you and inform you of dates and times available. They can give you a fact sheet on weddings at Justice Centres that may help you plan your ceremony.

Weddings in other locations

If you would like your ceremony to be held in your home or some other location that is special to you, you may:

Although judges and JPs will try to accommodate individual preferences to ensure that your important day is a memorable one, civil ceremonies must be performed with dignity and with the appropriate decorum. Discuss your specific wishes and preferences for your special day with the person who will be performing the ceremony beforehand.

Costs for civil ceremonies

Click here for information about the cost of a wedding held at a Justice Centre. If you choose another location, you must discuss and agree upon the appropriate fee with the person performing the ceremony.

Marriage licences

You must obtain your own marriage licence prior to the wedding. You must provide the marriage licence to the person officiating at the ceremony, at least three days prior to the ceremony.

Marriage licences will not be issued from the courts. A list of where marriage licences can be obtained is available at Justice Centres throughout the province or by clicking here.

For information on the cost of a marriage licence click here.

You will need to take the marriage licence to the ceremony, so the person performing the wedding can sign it and your marriage can be registered.