MA Legislative Poll 2021
We are thrilled that Senator Anne Gobi is taking the lead and resubmitting the Resolve to Evaluate the One-Day Solemnizer Rule. In addition, she is also submitting two Bills that support JPs. Before doing this, she asked Massachusetts JPus members to weigh in. These are the poll results.
100% of the Massachusetts JPs who responded to our poll would like to have the fees they may charge increased.
93% of the JPs who responded to our poll would like the application fees for 1-Day Solemnizers increased.
Comments provided by survey respondents, edited for clarity & length
- Thank you Sen Gobi for hearing the voice of Massachusetts JPs. We strive for professionalism and integrity in our roles. You efforts are much appreciated. Elizabeth Raymond, Justice of the Peace (Leominster Ma).
JPs are Pros
- One-day Solemnizers degrade Justices of the Peace, who have a much higher standard to adhere to.
- Couples would do well to consider carefully having an inexperienced person as their officiate on such an important day. Justice I. Marie Sherman, Brewster, MA.
- I have been a MA Justice of the Peace since 2004. I work hard to provide the best professional service I can to my clients. Fees have not been increased since when? I admit that sometimes I am hesitant when I hear of a 1-day solemnizer, as I worry that not everyone takes this service seriously and many town/city clerks have had issues with their paperwork. I am proud of the mentoring I receive and continual education for the work we all do.
- Official Justices of the Peace have been vetted by the MA Governor’s Office, take an oath of integrity and attend continuing education. We are proud of our professional network and have deep passion for this esteemed public service role.
One-Day Solemnizers Create Problems
- Allow a person only one One Day Solemnizer certificate per year. The fee should be $100.
- As a city clerk I can tell you, one day solemnizer’s get the paperwork wrong all of the time. Vital legal documents, that need to be true and correct. Most other states do not have them and for several good reasons. Thank you very much for your time and help.
- I would like to see the 1-Day Solemnization eliminated.
- My belief is that One Day Solemnizers should be limited to one solemnization per year. Currently there is no such restriction.
- I understand city/town clerks are very frustrated when one day officiants submit marriage licenses incorrectly. Lots of work to track down these people to get them to fill out duplicates; some one day officiants are from out of state, further exacerbating this issue. Also, professional JPs are more mindful of state covid guidelines around wedding gatherings.
- My town clerk informed me that ‘one day solemnizers’ often make clerical errors which requires increase in staff time to correct licenses, resulting in delays in sending out official marriage certificates in a timely manner.
- As a city clerk I can tell you, one day solemnizer’s get the paperwork wrong all of the time. Vital legal documents that need to be true and correct. Other states do not have them and for several good reasons. Thank you for your time and help.
- More information about One-Day Solemnizers and previous legislative activity
- This link explains what the Resolve to Evaluate the 1-Day Solemnizer Rule proposes.
- The Boston Globe ran a story about one-dayers on June 19, 2018 that mischaracterized JPs, calling them irrelevant – and JPus responded. Read about it, and get the link to our letter to the editor here.
- In 2021 JPus polled its Massachusetts JPs on legislative issues relevant to them.