In order to book your wedding with me, we must first establish that your date, time and location is available within my calendar.


Next, a $250 Booking Retainer is needed to secure your date and time in my calendar. The Booking Retainer may be paid via Venmo, Apple Pay, PayPal, personal check or cash.


Then, my full fee and Timeline Retainer isn't due until 15 days before your wedding. 


That’s it! Please read the details below.



The success of your wedding ceremony is very important to me. In order that it may unfold as smoothly as possible, I have assembled some essential policies where the scope of my services are concerned. Please be sure to read all of this carefully. 




  • When I receive your Booking Retainer, I will book your wedding into my calendar, reserve a block of time for your wedding and promise to perform your wedding.

  • The start time of your ceremony that we agree to at booking may be the only time that I can be available. Please start your wedding ceremony on time (see Ceremony Start Time below).

  • Booking Retainer:

    • For Venmo, Send $250 to @Paul-Howell-4

    • For Apple Pay or PayPal, send $250 to or 805-540-9294. 

    • To mail me a check, pleas ask me for my mailing address.


Ceremony Content


  • I’ll write your entire wedding ceremony based upon the notes I take in our meetings and our communication.

  • All that you need to do is look over information that I will send you and make choices, making any changes that you wish.

  • Please do not ask me to deliver a pre-written ceremony script, as that is not what I do. If you have something that you wish to include to the ceremony that I am preparing, just let me know 30 days before the wedding. Some of it I may use verbatim, some I may not, depending on how I feel it flows within the ceremony as a whole.

  • I don’t write religious based ceremonies. However, I am totally open to most scripture readings or readings that have religious themes and I am comfortable talking about your faith being important to you and playing a role and purpose for you within your marriage. I don't personally offer prayers or blessings but am happy to give space for someone to step up and offer a prayer or blessing to mirror your faith.


Ceremony Start Time


  • The start time of your ceremony that we agree on at booking may be the only time that I can be available. If you change the Ceremony Start Time, please let me know immediately.

  • Punctuality is extremely important, so please begin your wedding ceremony at it’s scheduled time. Timeliness is very critical to the venue and other vendors as well as courteous to your guests. Late starts often reverberate throughout the entire event.

  • If there is a delay in starting your wedding, there is a chance that I will not be able to perform your ceremony, as I may have other appointments, commitments or another ceremony to officiate after your ceremony.

  • If the ceremony begins within 30 minutes of the Start Time, the $100 Timeline Retainer will be refunded within 24 hours.

  • If your ceremony is 30 or more minutes late to begin there will be an additional $50 charge per each fifteen minute interval and there may be a chance that I will not be able to perform your ceremony.

  • I will arrive on-site early, usually 15-30 minutes prior, to give you reassurance that that there are no delays on my part and to complete day-of tasks.


COVID-19 Precautions


For the safety of me, you, your wedding party, your guests and other vendors:


All weddings must follow the current California State and San Luis Obispo county guidelines for safety with regard to the COVID-19 pandemic. Click Here for the San Luis Obispo County guidelines.


  • I will practice Social Distancing and may wear a mask except during the ceremony. I can wear a mask during the ceremony if you wish.

  • I will meet with you, your witness(es) and any other ceremony participants outside rather than indoors.

  • I'll handle the signing your marriage license by your witnesses outdoors rather than indoors.

  • If your wedding does not or if anyone present does not comply with California state and the county guidelines, I reserve the right to not officiate your wedding and all fees paid are non-refundable.




  • Because every wedding is different, every couple's needs are different and every budget is different, a rehearsal is not included in my wedding fee. My rehearsal fee is generally $195 but may vary due to location.




  • I am required by law to have your Marriage License before I can marry you. Please bring your marriage license with you to the wedding and make sure that I have it before the ceremony begins.

  • The County Clerk/Recorder will reject a license with any mistakes made in filling out the witness or officiant section. If this happens, the county clerk charges you a replacement license fee and reissues the license.

  • Before your witness(s) signs the license, I will very carefully instruct them exactly how they are to fill in the fields. If the witness makes a mistake, you will be responsible for the replacement fee, so choose a trustworthy witness. If I make a mistake in my section, I will pay the fee. 


Booking Retainer and Timeline Retainer


  • A $250 Booking Retainer is required to book with me. The $250 Booking Retainer will be applied towards my total fee for services that we agree upon.

  • The balance of my fee for services is due 15 days before the ceremony day.

  • In addition to the balance of my fee for services, a $100 Timeline Retainer is required 15 days before the ceremony day. The Timeline Retainer is to ensure that your wedding starts on time and will be refunded 24 hours after the wedding provided the ceremony started on time. (See Ceremony Start Time above)




  • Once your date is secured, I will turn away other weddings that will possibly conflict with yours.

  • If you cancel your wedding for any reason, please bear in mind that I may have turned away one or more weddings because of my commitment to yours, so the retainer and is non-refundable.

  • If you cancel your wedding within 30 days of its scheduled date, the entire fee is due and payable on the day of cancellation.

  • If you change your ceremony start time and I am able to accommodate the new time, my fee may differ from the original quote.

  • If you change your ceremony start date or time and I am unable to accommodate the new time, I will retain your retainer.

  • If I am unable to officiate on your wedding day, my fee will be waived, I'll refund any money paid to me and you will be responsible for the fee of the person who officiates. I will also reach out to my network of local officiants to do my best to find a stand-in or you may find another officiant on your own.


By remitting your Booking Retainer you are agreeing to the conditions herein and this is our contract. Upon request, I can provide you with a PDF contract for both of us to sign. Upon receipt of your Booking Retainer I will book your wedding into my calendar, reserve a block of time for your wedding and promise to perform your wedding.


I look forward to an enjoyable experience with you in the process of working with you and officiating your wedding!

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