JUSTICE OF THE PEACE SINGAPORE EDITION
A Justice of the Peace (JP) in Singapore derives his powers from statute law. A Justice of the Peace is appointed by The President of Singapore, who also has the power to revoke the appointment of any JP. Before exercising the functions of his office, a newly appointed Justice of the Peace is required to take the oath of office and allegiance as set out in the Schedule to the Subordinate Courts Act.
Justices of the Peace serve as visiting justices of Singapore prisons, and as mediators or referees in the subordinate courts. Most importantly, in context, they solemnise marriages in the Registry of Marriages.
DO YOU NEED A JUSTICE OF THE PEACE?
If you are planning to hold your solemnisation ceremony at the Registry of Marriages, you will not need to book a Justice of the Peace, as one will be provided on the day. However, if you intend to conduct your ceremony at a venue of your choice, you will need to find one on your own. In our opinion, for a simple solemnisation ceremony, you should be looking at the former option.
HOW TO CHOOSE A JUSTICE OF THE PEACE?
First of all, there is no right or wrong way of choosing. It depends on your needs and criteria. There is a list of solemnisers available on the Registry of Marriages’ website. The list can be filtered by district, postal code, and religion. Family Life Ambassadors are also available for the non-religious. They tend to give more secular advice on solving problems on marriage and might also recommend participating in one of their marriage preparation courses. Language preferences of both you and your solemniser should also come into consideration. Furthermore, some solemnisers might have their own standard operating procedures. Some might choose to meet up before your big day to give you tips and advice, others might prefer only to communicate via emails/messages. Find one that fulfils all your criteria!
ARRANGE A MEETING
Once you’ve confirmed your Justice of the Peace, remember to extend an invitation to your solemniser personally. Arrange a separate time to meet him or her for the signing of the Solemniser Consent Form. We recommend that you use this opportunity to get his or her backup contact (in case your chosen JP is unable to be present on the arranged date), and to find out more about the procedures and requirements of the Registry of Marriages.
ON ACTUAL DAY
All solemnisers are volunteers who are sacrificing their personal time and effort to officiate at your wedding. Hence, we do urge couples to extend their courtesy by arranging for someone to pick up the solemniser on the actual day. In addition, if things do not go as smoothly as planned, and if there is any delay in schedule, do your best to notify your Justice of the Peace. If not, they might leave the venue thinking the ceremony is cancelled.
As mentioned previously, Justices of the Peace are volunteers, and are not in this for the money. As far as we know, there is no expectation of payment. However, it is also common practice for couples to give a token sum in an ang bao, or red packet, as an act of appreciation.
This should not be expected to happen. However, in the event your Justice of the Peace is unable to make it for any reason, try contacting his or her backup contacts, or try and find a solemniser from the Registry of Marriages’ list who can make it on short notice. If not, your only solution is to bring your marriage documents and witnesses to the Registry the next working day, where they will conduct the proceedings.
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