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State Laws for Ministers

402.005 Definition of marriage. As used and recognized in the law of the Commonwealth, "marriage" refers only to the civil status, condition, or relation of one (1) man and one (1) woman united in law for life, for the discharge to each other and the community of the duties legally incumbent upon those whose association is founded on the distinction of sex.

402.020 Other prohibited marriages.
(1) Marriage is prohibited and void:
     (c) When not solemnized or contracted in the presence of an authorized person or society;
     (d) Between members of the same sex

402.045 Same-sex marriage in another jurisdiction void and unenforceable.
(1) A marriage between members of the same sex which occurs in another jurisdiction shall be void in Kentucky.
(2) Any rights granted by virtue of the marriage, or its termination, shall be unenforceable in Kentucky courts.

402.050 Who may solemnize marriage -- Persons present. (1) Marriage shall be solemnized only by:
     (a) Ministers of the gospel or priests of any denomination in regular communion with any religious society;
     (c) A religious society that has no officiating minister or priest and whose usage is to solemnize marriage at the usual place of worship and by consent given in the presence of the society, if either party belongs to the society.
(2) At least two (2) persons, in addition to the parties and the person solemnizing the marriage, shall be present at every marriage. The provisions of KRS 402.060(1), which had required a minister or priest who resided in Kentucky or who served as a minister or priest in a place of worship in Kentucky to obtain a license and to post bond to perform marriages in Kentucky, were repealed by the 1996 Regular Session of the General Assembly (1996 Acts, Chapter 205, SB 68). At the present time there are no licensing requirements applicable to ministers or priests who wish to perform marriages in Kentucky.

402.090 Soliciting persons to be married by particular person -- Sharing remuneration -- Solicitation by minister or justice of the peace.
(1) No person shall, for compensation or reward, solicit, persuade, entice, direct or induce any persons to go before any person authorized to solemnize marriage to be married. No such person shall receive for such services any part of the remuneration paid for solemnizing the marriage.
(2) No person authorized to solemnize marriage shall pay, give to, or divide or share with any other person any sum of money or other thing obtained by him for solemnizing marriage.
(3) No person authorized to solemnize marriage shall solicit, persuade, entice, direct or induce any persons to come before him to be married.

402.105 Marriage license valid for thirty days. A marriage license shall be valid for thirty (30) days, including the date it is issued, and after that time it shall be invalid.

402.220 Return of license and certificate to clerk after ceremony. The person solemnizing the marriage or the clerk of the religious society before which it was solemnized shall within one (1) month return the license to the county clerk of the county in which it was issued, with a certificate of the marriage over his signature, giving the date and place of celebration and the names of at least two (2) of the persons present.

402.990 Penalties.
(3) Any authorized person who knowingly solemnizes a marriage prohibited by this chapter shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. (4) Any unauthorized person who solemnizes a marriage under pretense of having authority, and any person who falsely personates the father, mother, or guardian of an applicant in obtaining a license shall be guilty of a Class D felony.
(9) Any person who violates any of the provisions of KRS 402.090 shall be guilty of a violation.
(11) Any person failing to make the return required of him by KRS 402.220 shall be guilty of a violation.

Massage Therapy
KRS 309.350 to 309.364 shall not preclude:
(4) Persons who restrict manipulation of the soft tissues of the human body to the hands, feet, or ears, and do not hold themselves out to be massage therapists;
(5) Persons who use procedures within the scope of practice of their profession, which has established standards and ethics, provided that their services use touch, words, and directed movement to deepen awareness of existing patterns of movement in the body as well as to suggest new possibilities of movement while engaged, but who are not designated or implied to administer massage or to be massage therapists. These practices include, but are not limited to, the Feldenkrais Method and the Trager Approach;
(6) Persons engaged within the scope of practice of a profession with established standards and ethics in which touch is limited to what is essential for palpation and affecting of the human energy system, provided that their services are not designated or implied to be massage or massage therapy. These practices include but are not limited to polarity therapy;

319.015 Activities not included in practice of psychology.
(7) A duly ordained minister, priest, rabbi, Christian Science practitioner, or other clergyman from carrying out his or her responsibilities while functioning in a ministerial capacity within a recognized religious organization serving the spiritual needs of its constituency, if he or she does not hold himself or herself out as a psychologist;

Social Workers
335.010 Purposes -- Exemptions.
(5) Nothing contained in KRS 335.010 to 335.160 and KRS 335.990 shall require persons employed by church-related or church-operated or affiliated agencies, children's homes, neighborhood centers, or other philanthropic and nonprofit field service offices to be licensed. The provisions of KRS 335.010 to 335.160 and KRS 335.990 shall not be construed to apply to, limit, or restrict the regulation of the title, setting of standards, qualifications, training, and experience of those engaged as employees of such entities in the practice of social work or applied social counseling.

335.040 Other professions exempt.
Nothing contained in KRS 335.010 to 335.160 and 335.990 shall be construed to prevent qualified members of other recognized professions from doing work within the standards and ethics of their respective professions provided they do not hold themselves out to the public by any title or description of services as being engaged in the practice of social work.

335.505 Professional Counselors
(3) Subsection (1) of this section shall not be construed to alter, amend, or interfere with the practice of those who engage in employment counseling, job placement counseling, vocational rehabilitation counseling, victim counseling or advocacy, pastoral counseling based on any tenet of one's religious beliefs, or school counseling.

Fee-Based Pastoral Counselors
335.600 Purpose of KRS 335.600 to 335.699 and KRE 506.
The purpose of KRS 335.600 to 335.699 and KRE 506 is to protect the public safety and welfare by providing for the certification and regulation of persons engaged in the practice of fee-based pastoral counseling. As such, it is not the intent of KRS 335.600 to 335.699 and KRE 506 to advance or inhibit religion, to in any way affect the performance of ordinary duties or functions of the clergy, or to foster excessive government entanglement with religion.

335.605 (4) "Ordained mini
ster or the denominational equivalent" means a person who has been called, elected, or otherwise authorized by a church, synagogue, denomination, or faith group through ordination, consecration, or equivalent means, to exercise within and on the behalf of the denomination or faith group specific religious leadership and service that furthers its purpose and mission.

335.630 Use of title "certified fee-based pastoral counselor"
(4) Nothing in KRS 335.600 to 335.699 shall be construed as regulating or limiting the ministry or services of a minister, including pastoral care and counseling, otherwise authorized by a church, denomination, or faith group to perform the ordinary duties or functions of the clergy.

436.160 Working on Sunday
(2) Persons who are members of a religious society which observes as a Sabbath any other day in the week than Sunday shall not be liable to the penalty prescribed in subsection (1) of this section, if they observe as a Sabbath one (1) day in each seven.

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