2020 : Marriage Ceremonies No Longer Restricted to Ministers

April 2, 2023 all-day

The state now allows secular people to perform and legalize marriages in Michigan as opposed to reserving the right for religious ministers. The Michigan Attorney General reversed its stance against the issue after a lawsuit was filed by the Center for Inquiry.

The Center for Inquiry (CFI), a nonprofit organization “dedicated to defending science and critical thinking in examining religion,” filed the lawsuit in 2018. The suit claimed Michigan’s marriage laws unconstitutionally granted “exclusive authority” to religious ministers to perform and legalize marriage ceremonies. The laws denied the same right to non-religious certified CFI individuals, according to a CFI news release.

Source: Meredith Spelbring, “Marriage ceremonies can now be legally performed by non-religious people”, Detroit Free Press, April 2, 2020.