What is the time frame you need to book a celebrant in and what are the legal requirements? Charis White Celebrant, Melbourne based celebrant


Today I had an enquiry for a Wedding in 35 days time, it got me thinking about the Notice of Intended Marriage. Maybe newly engaged couples do not know about this legal requirement?

Yes, it is a legal requirement that you fill in the Notice of Intended Marriage with a celebrant or prescribed authority and send it to your celebrant at least 30 days prior to your wedding. https://www.ag.gov.au/FamiliesAndMarriage/Marriage/Documents/Notice-of-intended-marriage.pdf

Here is a list of the people who can witness your signatures: * This Notice must be signed in the presence of any of the following:(a) if a party signs the Notice in Australia—an authorised celebrant, a Commissioner for Declarations under the Statutory Declarations Act1959, a justice of the peace, a barrister or solicitor, a legally qualified medical practitioner, or a member of the Australian Federal Police or the police force of a State or Territory;

(b) if a party signs the Notice outside Australia—an Australian Consular Officer, an Australian Diplomatic Officer, a notary public, an employee of the Commonwealth authorised under paragraph 3(c) of the Consular Fees Act 1955, or an employee of the Australian Trade Commission authorised under paragraph 3(d) of the Consular Fees Act 1955.Note: For the definitions of Australian Consular Officer and Australian Diplomatic Officer, see section 2 of the Consular Fees Act 1955.

You must then send the original onto you celebrant and he/she must receive it and lodge it at least 30 days prior to your wedding. The celebrant will then have to sight all of the legally required documents such as passports and or birth certificates, divorce certificates or death certificates, prior to the Wedding taking place.

I normally do the Notice of Intended Marriage in our first or second meeting and I would site all of the documentation at the same time. This document is the legal framework for your marriage and I like to complete this sooner than later. You can complete it anywhere up to 18 months in advance.

There are very few exceptions that The Registry of Birth Deaths and Marriages will allow a couple to marry under in under 30 days notice. These exceptions are:

1.) Employment-related or other travel commitments

2.)Wedding or celebration arrangements, or religious considerations

3.)Medical reasons

4.)Legal proceedings

5.)Celebrant error in giving notice

Typically the more popular celebrants will book up 12-18 months in advance. So, if you have your heart on a particular celebrant, to avoid disappointment–Book early!!!