For Great Justice

My name is Jessamyn West. I was elected Justice of the Peace in Randolph Vermont on November 6, 2012. My term started February 1st, 2013 and lasts for two years. Do you need a Vermont JP?

More information on what a VT Justice of the Peace does (pdf)

Nov 18

Can’t you just be one of those Universal Life Church ministers?

People have a lot of questions but one of the few that is frequently asked has to do with alternatives to becoming a JP if you just want to marry someone. As people probably know, the usual loophole is to become ordained in the Universal Life Church which is a non-churchy sort of church where you’d find yourself in some decent company. However as of 2008, such subterfuge isn’t necessary in Vermont where you can be a temporary officiant (for a small fee) as long as you plan a few days in advance. Vermont is such a reasonable state.

I know a few people who do many ULC weddings and I think it’s a neat thing to do. And the Universal Life Church is a fascinating idea. Always interesting to see if they’ll get tax exempt status with each passing year (some years yes, some years no; wish I could say the same for other churches). While I’m intrigued by the idea of doing weddings, it’s not really my main interest in JP-ing. Some people seem to be a JP basically only to do weddings which is probably pretty nifty. I should probably look over the JP Guide some more and see if I can do a standout job at … oath solemnizing or something.