Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier.

- Mother Teresa
Legal Information

The Attorney-General stipulates that the following legal requirements must be met before a couple may be legally married and the marriage registered.

To be legally married in Australia, a man and woman must:

  • not be married to someone else
  • not be marrying a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother or sister
  • be at least eighteen years old, unless a court has approved a marriage where one party is aged between 16-18 years old
  • understand what marriage means and freely consent to becoming man and wife
  • use specific words during the ceremony
  • give written notice of their intention to marry to their authorised celebrant.

You don't have to be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident of Australia to legally marry here. See the marriage visa information on the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website  (http://www.immi.gov.au )  if you hope to live in Australia after your marriage.

  • A completed Notice of Intended Marriage form (NOIM Form 13)must be given to your celebrant at least one month before the wedding. You can give it to your celebrant up to 18 months beforehand. The NOIM form may be read and downloaded from the Attorney-General's website. PLEASE DO NOT SIGN THE FORM AS IT NEEDS TO BE WITNESSED BY YOUR CELEBRANT OR AUTHORISED PERSON) (www.ag.gov.au/FamiliesAndMarriage/Marriage/Documents/NoticeofIntendedMarriageForm.pdf)
  • Your celebrant can help you complete the form. The notice may be completed and witnessed outside Australia if required (by authorised persons only).
  • If there is less than one month before your wedding. A prescribed authority may approve a shorter notice time in some limited circumstances. Special application to a judge or Courts is necessary. http://marriage.ag.gov.au/internet/marriagecelebrants.nsf/publicViewCelebrants?OpenView&StartKey=NSW-PrescribedAuthorities
  • You will need to show your celebrant evidence of date and place of birth, identity (Original Birth Certificate from Births Deaths and Marriages or if from overseas must be translated into English by an acceptable translator), Overseas Passport (Australian Passports not accepted) and the end of any previous marriages for each party (also translated into English by an authorised translator). In Australia, the Decree Absolute or Death Certificate must be produced. In some instances your celebrant may also ask you to complete a statutory declaration to support your evidence. When meeting your celebrant you must also show a current valid Photo ID such as a Drivers Licence or current Passport.
  • For translation or interpreting services contact 24hr/7day on site interpreting service available from Community Relations Commission 1300 651­ 500 or Sydney 02 8255­ 6767, Level 8 175-183 Castlereagh St, Sydney Mon-Fri 8am-5pm
The Wedding Ceremony
  • Two witnesses over the age of 18 years must be present at the ceremony in addition to the bridal couple and celebrant. The two witnesses will be required to sign the formal legal paperwork after the ceremony is solemnised.

After the legal Monitum and Vows have been heard and witnessed by the celebrant , the bridal couple and two witnesses will be invited to sign the Register of Marriage, a Commemorative Marriage Certificate and two Form 14 Certificates of Marriage which will also be signed by your celebrant. The Commemorative Marriage Certificate is not legally acceptable when applying for a Passport or for Banks or Government Departments. Your celebrant will send your NOIM and one of the Form 14 Certificates of Marriages within 14 days of the ceremony to your state register of Births , Deaths and Marriages where your marriage will be officially entered into their database  and you may then apply for  an extract of your marriage which requires several forms of ID or your celebrant can include the application with your original registration  papers and you will receive your marriage certificate extract from Births, Deaths and Marriages in approximately three weeks. You may then use this certificate to apply for a Passport, proof of marital status to a Bank or Government Department or other places requiring marital status proof. Prior to issue of this marriage certificate extract from Births, Deaths and Marriages your Commemorative Marriage Certificate may be used as proof such as a hotel for an upgrade to the Bridal Suite or similar places requiring proof which are not Government departments , Banks or Passport Offices. You may choose to include your Commemorative Marriage Certificate with your Wedding Day Mementoes or frame it once you have received your official registered marriage extract from Births, Deaths and Marriages.

Australian law defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages entered into in other countries are not recognised as legal marriages in Australia.

Some state and territory governments allow people to register their same-sex relationship. You can find out more information from state and territory registries of births, deaths and marriages.

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