It’s not difficult to be legally married anywhere in Australia! So what are the ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS to ensure you are legally married?
Legal Paperwork Essentials
The first legal paperwork – the Notification of Intention to Marry (NOIM) – must be completed and lodged with your Celebrant at least ONE MONTH prior to your wedding date. You don’t have to have set your wedding date at the time of submitting your NOIM as the signed form remains valid for 18 months, giving you that time to finalise your arrangements.
Just before you are married your Celebrant will request you to read, fill in and sign another legal form “No Legal Impediment to Marriage”. This form is you both simply stating that there is NO LEGAL REASON why you cannot marry each other (that is, you’re not married to anyone else).
At your marriage ceremony you, your two witnesses and your Celebrant will sign three documents at the conclusion of your ceremony. These documents are;
1. Your presentation Marriage Certificate which is given to you on your wedding day;
2. The legal Marriage certificate form (No Legal Impediment to Marriage is on the back of this form);
3. An exact copy of the legal Marriage certificate form for the Celebrant to file in their official records (this may be in the form of the Big Red Book or may just be a single piece of paper)
Your Celebrant will hold all legal forms until after your marriage and will then submit them to the Office of Births Deaths and Marriages in the state where you’re married.
Requirements for your Ceremony
There are three basic requirements for attendees at your marriage ceremony.
No 1 – YOU two, the marrying couple!
No 2 – an authorised person to conduct your marriage ceremony and complete all the legal paperwork. This may be an ordained Minister or a Registered Civil Marriage Celebrant. (76% of marriages in Australia today are conducted by Civil Celebrants!); and
No 3 – two adult witnesses present at your ceremony. They must be over the age of 18, understand English and be present for the whole ceremony. These witnesses can be anyone you choose. It’s preferable that the witnesses know you but that is not a legal requirement. If, for whatever reason, you cannot provide 2 witnesses then your Celebrant may be able to provide them for you on the day.
The witnesses are required to listen to you repeat your legal declarations at your ceremony and then witness by signing the papers that it is you – the marrying couple – who have signed the legal documents. Your witnesses are NOT required to provide any ID or personal information to your Marriage Celebrant.
If you have these essential people at your marriage ceremony then you don’t need to have anyone or anything else!
There is some legal wording that you must hear and recite in your marriage ceremony – one paragraph your Celebrant will recite and a Declaration that each of you must recite for everyone present to hear. Your celebrant will ensure that these legal paragraphs are part of your ceremony.
There is nothing too difficult here! Let’s get you legally married with very little effort and no stress!