The first reason is that a successful wedding is all about the details. Not all weddings are complex, but many are. By spelling out in the wedding agreement exactly what the wedding is supposed to be, it avoids many problems. It also spells out who is responsible for what in the wedding so there are no misunderstanding.
We are proud of the fact that only twice in 20 years have we been asked to refund the money paid for a wedding.
In the first the bride wanted one kind of wedding and the mother wanted another. I wrote the wedding the way the bride wanted it. The mother wanted it changed, the daughter didn't. Since I wouldn't change it to the way the mother wanted unless the daughter agreed but she didn't. The mother was paying so she hired someone else and demanded her money back. I wouldn't have had to give it to her, but I did.
In the second, I became ill and had another minister do the wedding. They didn't like the fact that she was female and claimed that she did a poor job. I had received nothing but compliments on the weddings she had done previously, but I refunded the money anyway.
I think one of the reasons I've only been asked for a refund twice in twenty years is that I use a wedding agreement and everyone's expectations are clearly spelled out.
The second reason I give a wedding agreement is that if I agree to do a wedding, unless I can't get out of bed because of illness (once in 20 years) or am dead I will be there to give you the Beautiful, Meaningful and Memorable wedding you desire.
I pick up a lot of last minute weddings. I get a call from a frantic bride or groom who had someone else who was supposed to do a wedding, sometimes another officiate, sometimes a friend or family member who gets ordained so they can do the ceremony (Note: This type of ordination for a wedding has been challenged in divorce proceeding as not valid in some states) In any case they had someone else booked to do the wedding. At the last minute the person set to do the wedding backs out.
If you book me for a wedding you will receive a wedding agreement that is my commitment to you that I WILL be there to do your wedding.
I married a couple recently at the Tapawingo Golf Club, a facility that I had never done a wedding before. Here are a few photos from the celebration.