Information about your Ministry
Important Information concerning your ministry
for Ministers ordained by
Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc.
It is your responsibility to inform yourself of all State, Federal and local laws that govern your ministry.
If there is a lapse in your yearly licensing fees to Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc. (due during your ordination month) then you are not longer covered our legal “umbrella”. Therefore, you are not allowed to perform civil ceremonies and or any other service as an ordained minister.
Before you officiate a Wedding Ceremony
You are responsible for educating yourself and for following local laws and requirements in your area, for your particular practice. Some cities and states require you to register as a minister. It is your responsibility to check with local authorities before you perform any ceremony as an ordained minister to see what the requirements are for your area. In the USA you should contact the local “Clerk of the Court” for this information, and also research what the laws are in your area. These requirements may change between counties and it is your responsibility to insure that you are legally permitted to perform any ceremony before doing so. The best example of this is New York State, were if performing a ceremony in the five boroughs of New York City you must register before officiating a marriage ceremony. This requirement is not necessary any were else in the state that we know of at this time.
When performing wedding ceremonies, you are the one who must have the marriage certificate signed by witnesses, if required, and/or sign it yourself. This must be done on the wedding day. You are responsible for sending that certificate back within the required time, to the Clerk of Courts office/local licensing agency (all information should be on the license or call the local county before the wedding day to find out what is required of an officiant). Please check local laws as there may be a time period that this must be done within to prevent being fined or possibly being sentenced to prison. For example in North Carolina marriage licenses must be returned in ten (10) days to the issuing authority. If you do not meet this deadline then you will be required to pay a fine of $200.00 and and shall also be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor (if convicted you will go to jail) ( NC Statutes 51 –- 7).
Before conducting a ceremony always remember to check the guidelines for that location were the ceremony will be conducted.
Before you agree to officiate a wedding ceremony. Contact the Local Bureau/Clerk of Courts office as to whether you are required to register or present a minister’s verification letter. In some states you can be fined up to $1,000.00 and up to a year imprisonment for failure to follow certain regulations.
If you have any questions or would like a Minister’s Verification Letter please call the office at 954-574-9904.
All states and locals have different requirements so please check.
If you are using your ordination to open a church, center, etc., you must let your clients know under what legal avenue they are coming to you. Example; on your business cards, brochures or advertisements, you must:
- Indicate you are an ordained minister. This can be done in a number of ways; Rev. in front of your name, or Interfaith Minister under your name, or clergy or Ordained through Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc. In short you must have some clear way of letting anyone know that this is how you are legally practicing.
- You must also obtain any business licenses and/or complete any filings that are necessary for the financial end (such as tax ID, etc). This depends on how you are going to classify your business, ie: nonprofit, not-for-profit or regular business.
- If you are unsure you can get information locally from your library, contact your local or state government licensing agency or consult an attorney or accountant.
- Remember, you are a professional. Most organizations provide a ‘Code of Ethics’ which controls your moral and ethical standards. Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc. honors your independent ministry. It is up to you to honor and protect the integrity of your ministry and Universal Brotherhood Movement. Inc.
Some resources that may be available in your area to help you start your business:
- Service Core of Retired Executives (SCORE)
- Local entrepreneurial council
- Local economic development commission
- Local Small Business Administration
- Local Chamber of Commerce
- Local Community Colleges (may have small business centers)
- Your state departments of Labor and Commerce
- Local government councils
If you have any questions about Universal Brotherhood Movement, Inc, please feel free to contact our office at 954-574-9904.