How to get married in Australia

As you dive headfirst into planning your wedding, you really need to keep the legal side of things in mind.

Whether you plan to get married at the Victorian Marriage Registry, or in a hot air balloon over the Yarra Valley, the rules are still the same and you’ll need to provide certain documents before your marriage can be formalised.

Most of the time your marriage celebrant will take care of the details, but you can be ahead of things by keeping the following things  in mind:

According to the Marriage Act of 1961, all couples need to meet a required number of obligations.

These formalities begin with the submission of a Notice of Intended Marriage (NIM). This should be done through your celebrant, and should take place no more than a year and a half before the wedding ceremony. It should, however, be lodged no later than one month before the proceedings.

Usually, the NIM is completed when you first meet with your Civil Marriage Celebrant and the production of all of the relevant documents. All of this should be done well in advance of the wedding date. However, if one of the partners is abroad, it is permissible for the other partner to sign on their behalf. Note that any other circumstances require the mandatory inclusion of both party’s signatures.

What documents do I need to get married in Australia?

Required documents include your original birth certificate or an authorised section thereof. This is particularly important for Australian citizens. If, however, you don’t have access to a birth certificate, then ask your marriage celebrant to provide the relevant application forms in obtaining one.
If one of the parties were born outside of Australia, then the production of a birth certificate can be substituted with that of other documents. An international passport in place of the birth certificate is generally accepted.

If one of the partners was married before, all of the relevant documents must be produced. This includes proof of divorce or a death certificate in the case of widowhood. All of these papers should be prepared well in advance of the wedding. Documented proof of a previous wedding annulment should also be prepared if necessary.
Before the wedding, it is important for both parties to sign a declaration affirming no legal obstacle to the marriage. It is essential, and a legal obligation for all persons concerned to be honest in these proceedings!

And once you’ve done all that, then give us a shout to talk about your wedding photography!