The Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Act 2017 started on 9 December 2017. This Act amended the Marriage Act 1961 to redefine marriage as ‘the union of two people to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.’
Legal requirements to be married in Australia
- In Australia, both parties to the marriage must be at least 18 years old. Exceptions to this are outlined in Section 12 of the Marriage Act 1961.
- At our ceremony, you must have two witnesses aged 18 years or over to sign the certificates of marriage and the marriage register.
- Prior to your wedding, you must sign a declaration stating that there are no legal impediments to your marriage and that your are not closely related to each other.
- A Notice of Intended Marriage or NOIM must be lodged with your celebrant no less than one month and no earlier than 18 months before the date of your wedding ceremony.
Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM)
The Notice of Intended Marriage form (NOIM) is a legal document that must be lodged with an authorised marriage celebrant at least one (1) month prior to the date of your wedding.
When we meet and you have made the decision to contract me as your celebrant, I can provide you with the NOIM or you may download one here. I can help you prepare this form for you to sign and I will witness it. You will be required to provide proof of your age and place of birth (such as a birth certificate or passport – either Australian or overseas). Please note that I must sight originals of these documents (not copies) and I do not retain copies of any of your original documents.
If one or both of you has been previously legally married you must provide evidence of divorce, or death of the previous spouse. Once the NOIM has been completed this form remains with me until after your wedding ceremony when I lodge it with Births, Deaths and Marriages section along with the certificate of marriage and the declaration stating no legal impediments.
Code of Practice for Marriage Celebrants
The Code of Practice for Marriage Celebrants is available here.
When we meet to complete and sign the NOIM, I will provide you with a Service Agreement that outlines our rights and responsibilities in relation to your ceremony. You may view the Service Agreement here.
Your Marriage Certificate
At the conclusion of your wedding ceremony, I will present you with a commemorative certificate as a beautiful reminder of this important occasion. This certificate is not normally accepted by organisations, such as banks, as proof of your marriage.
The Births, Deaths and Marriages (BDM) section in South Australia is responsible for registering and maintaining an accurate record of all marriages conducted in South Australia.
After your wedding, it is recommended that you apply to BDM for your official marriage certificate. You can do this on-line by clicking here. This link will also show you the current fee that you will need to pay yourself directly to BDM.
Changing your family name to your spouse’s
To change your family name on documents and documents such as your driver’s licence, passport and bank accounts you need to apply directly to the relevant organisations (for example; TransportSA, Australian Passport Office or your bank). You will need to provide your marriage certificate that you have obtained from Births, Deaths and Marriages (not the commemorative one that I will present to you on the day of your wedding).
If you decide to take on your partner’s name after your marriage, you do not need to register your new name Consumer and Business Services (CBS) in South Australia. If you have any questions about your new name, please contact CBS directly at https://www.cbs.sa.gov.au/ or by phone on 131 882.
The CBS office is located at 91 Grenfell Street, Adelaide SA 5000.