Marriage licence fees to increase

Senior staff reporter

Friday, October 12, 2018

Print this page Email A Friend!

MARRIAGE licence fees are to be increased in line with charges in other jurisdictions, Justice Minister Delroy Chuck has announced.

Speaking at a quarterly press briefing at his ministry yesterday, he said the Government has been earning from the fees but that the cost for the service, which is mainly utilised by foreigners, is too low.

“Most of the marriage licence [requests] are from guests who want to get married in Jamaica; $4,000 is chicken feed, so we will increase those. It could be a major money earner for the tourism sector, and that's something the Ministry of Justice deals with every hour — marriage licences being issued to tourists who come here — and we want to ramp that up so that more can be earned by the Jamaican Government,” Chuck said.

The justice minister said approximately 5,000 visitors have been married in the island since the start of the year.

“When a tourist comes here and is asked to pay US$35 for a marriage licence, he really wonders what sort of banana republic [this is], that you would only charge U$35,” he continued.

Chuck said the ministry will conduct a survey of fees in other jurisdictions such as Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom, and charge a similar fee.

“It really costs us a fair amount to process these marriage licences, so we want it to be a reasonable sum. For locals, it's not that difficult because the marriage officers get it for them, unless they want a private ceremony,” he said.

In the meantime, the minister signed a contract for more than $50 million, prior to the briefing, for the re-establishment of the Kingston and St Andrew Family Court attendance centre, at the corner of East and Beeston streets in downtown Kingston. The contractor is Contracts Enterprise Limited.

The centre, which was located on Duke Street, was destroyed by fire in December 2015.

Permanent secretary in the ministry, Carol Palmer, said the work is already under way and that the centre is scheduled for opening in January.

“Our children who depend on the resocialisation services of this entity have been, on and off, trying to get their education going,” she said.

The centre is a non-residential rehabilitation facility for people 12 to 18 years old, who have dropped out of the formal education system and are being assisted in a rehabilitation process. It also assists with effecting some of the orders of the Family Court.

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at




1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed:

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email:

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

comments powered by Disqus



Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon