Getting Married in Australia - Information for Visiting Couples

 
“Beautiful one day, perfect the next!”

Brisbane Queensland is a wonderful choice for a destination wedding.

With almost 300 days of sunshine a year, a temperate climate, major international airport and convenient access to a wide range of beaches, waterfront locations, parks, gardens, and interesting indoor and outdoor locations, together with big city variety and choice of service providers, Brisbane offers everything you need to ensure your vision for your wedding becomes a reality. So if you're thinking let's just elope consider getting married while on holiday. It's easy, it's affordable, and it's a fun way to start your married life.

more information about the Wedding Ceremony Packages I offer

Good reasons to get married in Brisbane

 
  • Our wonderful climate allows outdoor weddings all year round, we have great restaurants and other indoor spaces, including chapels, and you can get married in a private home if you wish.
  • There are no legal restrictions on where you marry, so you can choose anywhere that suits  your style and your vision for your ceremony
  • Flowers are in bloom and the trees are green all year round
  • Brisbane is a growing cosmopolitan city, still small enough to be very convenient but large enough to supply a wide choice of service-providers for any service you need at an affordable cost
  • You will not be locked into a suite of predetermined services and suppliers as you would with a package wedding at a resort
  • Your total wedding spend will be much less than in other parts of Australia.

Good Reasons to Marry in Australia

 
It is easy. It is simple. The rules are minimal.  You have complete freedom of choice as to what you incorporate in your marriage ceremony, the style and type of ceremony, where and when you marry, and who marries you, civil celebrant or religious celebrant:
  • Australia is politically stable, so your wedding plans are not going to be disrupted
  • Everyone speaks English, but we are one of the most multicultural countries on earth, so if you need to use a language other than English in your wedding ceremony, all you need is an interpreter
  • You don't need any vaccinations, blood tests, or X-rays - either to come into the country, or to get marries.
  • If you marry in a civil ceremony in Australia, adhering to the local legal requirements, your marriage will generally be legally recognised in your own country. It would be wise to satisfy yourself about this by checking with your own government authorities, particularly if you are a same-sex couple. (Australia has had marriage equality since December 2017)
  • Marrying in Australia is simple. So you do not need to sign up for a wedding package deal with a specialist company
  • Our beaches and parks are public places, so you don't have to believe anyone who tells you you have to use their services as a package because other service providers will be denied entry.
  • There are no government fees other than the cost of obtaining a registered copy of your marriage certificate and an Apostille or Authentication stamp if required by your home country, though you may have to pay for a permit if you choose certain places for your wedding venue
  • There are few rules governing how you may marry
  • There are no restrictions on time of the day weddings can be performed (you can get married 24/7)
  • The power to marry is vested solely in the celebrant, not the location, so a legal marriage can be performed anywhere you choose – you do not have to get married in a church, a registry office or a designated venue, so you can get married in a park, by the river, in a restaurant, a private residence, in an interesting historical building, or even surrounded by kangaroos, koalas, water dragons or other wildlife
  • You do not need to have a government official (registrar) attend the wedding in addition to the registered celebrant.
  • You do not have to choose between a totally secular and a religious ceremony – music and readings with religious connotations, readings and prayers can be incorporated in a civil ceremony conducted by a civil marriage celebrant if the couple wishes - and you could even have your ceremony in a non-denominational chapel.
  • No interviews are necessary (we can work entirely by email, phone, or mail)

To Marry in Australia ....

 

  • you must both be over 18
  • you must be free to marry (i.e. not already married, either to each other or to some other person)
  • you must both freely consent to the marriage
  • you cannot be close relatives, such as sibling, or parent and child, either by blood or adoption (but you can be first cousins)
  • you must give a minimum of one month and a maximum of 18 months formal notice of your intention to marry by lodging a properly witnessed Notice of Intended Marriage with your chosen celebrant. If you are overseas this form can be witnessed at the Australian Embassy  in your country or by a Notary Public
  • you must produce proof of identity and date and place of birth (see below)
  • you must produce proof that you are free to marry if you are divorced or widowed (see below)
  • you must produce properly notarised translations of any documents not in English
  • before the ceremony commences you must sign a declaration that you are free to marry
  • you must have two witnesses at least 18 years of age present, and they must be able  to understand both what kind of ceremony it is, and the legal ramifications of it. They do not have to be Australian citizens or resident in Australia, and they can be strangers)
  • you must both be capable of understanding the ceremony, therefore
    • both of you and both of your witnesses must be sober (that means you can't be under the influence of alcohol, legal prescribed medications, or illegal drugs
    • if the either or both of you or one or both of the witnesses is not fluent in English an official interpreter must be present to interpret
    • if the either or both of you or one or both of the witnesses is hearing impaired a sign language interpreter is required
  • you must say your vows out loud
  • you must include some legally required words/phrases in your vows
  • you, your witnesses and your celebrant must sign the marriage register and marriage certificate immediately after the ceremony
  • you must bring the following original documents with you to Australia because without them you will not be able to be married (your celebrant is legally required to sight them before performing the ceremony. Photocopies are not acceptable)
    • Proof of name and birth (your birth certificate OR passport)
    • Original divorce decree (if applicable)
    • Original death certificate for a former spouse (if applicable)
    • Documentary evidence of any change of name
    • Valid passport
    • Notarised official English translations of any of these documents that are in another language.

There are a lot of things demanded by other countries that you do not have to do

 
  • You don't need any special visa to be married in Australia
  • There are no residence requirements. You can get married the day you arrive as long as the required notice has been given
  • You do not have to remain in Australia for any length of time either before or after your wedding, though we hope you will - there is so much to see and do, so it's a fantastic place for a honeymoon
  • You do not have to participate in pre-marriage education (though it is strongly encouraged) and every couple is given a government pamphlet and information about pre-marriage courses
  • You do not have to have blood tests
  • You do not have to have a medical examination or show your celebrant any medical certificates
  • You do not have to have a certificate of no impediment or freedom to marry (but you should check whether your home country requires you to notify authorities there)
  • You do not have to have identification documentation about your parents
  • You do not have to have the consent of parents or guardians if you are over 18
  • You do not have to have a certificate of non-pregnancy
  • You do not have to make your intention to marry public
  • You do not have to marry with "open doors" as in England, for example, therefore your wedding can be very private
  • You do not have to dress formally if you do not wish to do so
  • You do not have to exchange rings if you do not wish to do so
  • You do not have to kiss if you'd prefer not to - whether for cultural or personal reasons
  • You do not have to change your name

Apostilles and Authentications

 

Australia is a signatory to The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirements of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents. This means that where your government requires proof that Australian documents are genuine before they will accept them, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will certify that official signatures, stamps or seals on a document are genuine by checking them against a specimen held on file, and stamping the document with an Apostille or Authentication. You will require an official registered copy of your marriage certificate for this purpose. There is a fee for this service.


more information about Getting Married
more information about Wedding Ceremony Packages
more information about Legals Only Weddings
more information about Secret and Surprise Weddings