Getting Married in Australia

A Comprehensive Guide to Getting Married in Australia

Getting married is one of the most exciting and significant events in your life. If you’re planning to tie the knot in Australia, you might be wondering about the legal requirements and steps involved. This guide will walk you through everything you need to know to ensure your special day goes smoothly.

Step 1: Understand the Legal Requirements

Before diving into the planning, it’s essential to understand the legal prerequisites for getting married in Australia. Here are the key points:


  • Both parties must be at least 18 years old. In exceptional cases, a court order can permit a person aged 16 or 17 to marry, but this is rare.

Relationship Status

  • You must not be married to someone else.
  • You must not be in a prohibited relationship, which includes marrying a close relative like a sibling or parent.


  • Both parties must give real consent. Forced marriages are illegal.

Step 2: Choose Your Type of Ceremony

In Australia, you have two main types of wedding ceremonies:

Civil Ceremony

  • Conducted by an authorized marriage celebrant.
  • Offers flexibility in terms of location and style.

Religious Ceremony

  • Conducted by a registered minister of religion.
  • Takes place according to the rites of a religious organization.

Step 3: Select a Date and Venue

Once you know the type of ceremony you want, it’s time to pick a date and venue. Popular venues include beaches, parks, churches, and private properties. Ensure the venue is available on your chosen date and fits your vision and budget.

Step 4: Lodge a Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM)

What is NOIM?

The Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM) is a legal document that must be lodged with your celebrant at least one month before your wedding date and no more than 18 months prior.

How to Lodge NOIM

  • Download the NOIM form from the Australian Government Website.
  • Complete the form with your personal details and intended marriage date.
  • Sign the form in the presence of an authorized witness, such as a celebrant, justice of the peace, barrister, or police officer.
  • Submit the form to your celebrant, who will keep it until your wedding day.

Step 5: Prepare Your Documents

When lodging the NOIM, you’ll need to provide certain documents:

  • Proof of Birth: Original birth certificates or passports.
  • Proof of Identity: Government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport.
  • Proof of End of Previous Marriages: If applicable, you’ll need divorce decrees or death certificates of former spouses.

Step 6: Plan the Ceremony

Personalize Your Vows

While there are legally required phrases you must say, you can also write personal vows to make your ceremony unique and meaningful.

Choose Witnesses

You’ll need two witnesses over the age of 18 to sign the marriage certificates on your wedding day.

Arrange the Details

Plan the logistics, such as seating arrangements, decorations, and the order of events. If you’re having a reception, consider catering, music, and photography.

Step 7: The Wedding Day

Conduct the Ceremony

Your celebrant or religious minister will conduct the ceremony according to your plans. After the vows, you, your partner, the witnesses, and the celebrant will sign three marriage certificates.

Receive Your Marriage Certificate

You will receive a ceremonial marriage certificate on the day. To obtain an official marriage certificate, which is required for legal purposes, you will need to apply to the Registry of Births, Deaths, and Marriages in your state or territory.

Step 8: Register Your Marriage

Your celebrant is responsible for registering your marriage with the Registry of Births, Deaths, and Marriages. This typically happens within 14 days of the ceremony. You can then apply for the official marriage certificate, which you might need for name changes, visa applications, and other legal purposes.


Getting married in Australia involves a series of steps that ensure your marriage is legally recognised. From lodging the NOIM to planning the perfect ceremony, each stage is crucial. By following this guide, you’ll be well on your way to creating a memorable and legally binding wedding day. Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials, and best wishes for a lifetime of happiness together!

Who Walks the Bride Down the Aisle on Her Wedding Day?

When it comes to weddings, tradition often plays a significant role in shaping the ceremony. One time-honored tradition that many brides grapple with is the question of who should walk them down the aisle. While the classic image is of a father proudly escorting his daughter, modern weddings have evolved to embrace a wider range of possibilities. In this blog post, we’ll explore the various options for choosing the perfect escort for your walk down the aisle.

1. The Traditional Choice: Father

For generations, the father of the bride has been the go-to choice for walking a bride down the aisle. This tradition symbolizes the transition of responsibility and protection from father to husband. If you have a close and loving relationship with your father, this can be a deeply meaningful choice.

2. Modern Twists on Tradition

If you want to maintain some tradition but with a modern twist, consider having both parents walk you down the aisle. This choice not only honors both of your parents but also reflects a more egalitarian view of the transition into marriage.

3. Choose a Close Family Member

In cases where your father is not available or if you have a stronger bond with someone else in your family, you may opt for another close family member. This could be a stepfather, grandfather, uncle, or even a brother. The key is to select someone who holds a special place in your heart.

4. Friends as Family

Some brides have close friends who are like family to them. If you have a friend who has been your rock and a constant presence in your life, don’t hesitate to ask them to walk you down the aisle. Your wedding is about celebrating the people who matter most to you.

5. Solo Walk

If you’re a fiercely independent bride or have complex family dynamics, you may choose to walk down the aisle solo. This symbolizes your self-reliance and can be a powerful statement about your autonomy.

6. Combining Cultures

In multicultural weddings, couples often blend customs and traditions. This can extend to who escorts the bride down the aisle. Don’t be afraid to incorporate elements from both sides of your family to create a unique and meaningful experience.

7. Customize Your Approach

Remember that your wedding day is about you and your partner. Don’t feel constrained by tradition or family expectations. You have the freedom to create your own unique ceremony that reflects your values, relationships, and personalities. Discuss your options with your partner and choose the path that resonates most with both of you.

Final Thoughts

The question of who walks the bride down the aisle is deeply personal and should reflect your individual desires and circumstances. There is no right or wrong answer, only what feels right for you. Whether you choose to follow tradition or blaze a new trail, what matters most is that the person by your side is there to support and celebrate the start of this beautiful journey into marriage.

Ultimately, your wedding day is about love, unity, and the commitment you and your partner are making to each other. Make this moment your own, and cherish the memories you create as you walk down the aisle, hand in hand with the person who means the most to you.

Rebecca and Joe

Joe and Rebecca met through their dogs Dexter and Red. The first time was around 2014, their dogs are the same breed and having known each other well from puppies, they had developed a lovely bond. Rebecca knew Joe but he was always in a hurry and often fobbed her off. Rebecca recalls on one particular occasion (a few months before they started dating) when the dogs were so excited to see each other and Joe literally just kept walking even after Rebecca tried to engage him. She remembers thinking at the time – WOW he’s kind of rude.


In May 2017 just after arriving back from the UK and being jetlagged Rebecca decided to stay awake and take the dog for a walk at the beach – there was Red and Joe – in contrast from the last time she’d seen Joe he was engaging and polite- at the same time Rebecca ran into her work friends and they wanted to hear all the goss on her big holiday. She had to say to her friend- I love you but I really want to talk to this guy and let the dogs play – they were like long lost brothers together and Rebecca swears there was another force at play that day.


Rebecca said she felt very drawn to Joe, like cupid had punched her in the face. Rebecca had been divorced for 17 years and single for 8 and hadn’t been remotely interested in love or any form of relationship for a very long time. Joe had been living the bachelor’s life for a few years and he wasn’t looking for anything serious either.


They walked along the beach and chatted, about what they can’t recall. Rebecca does recall thinking how interesting and comfortable it was. The conversation flowed with ease. They parted ways and Rebecca felt excited but sad because they hadn’t exchanged details. By the time she got home Rebecca had a Facebook friend request from Joe.  She was pretty happy as she now had some way to stay in touch. Being old fashioned and very out of touch with romance Rebecca wasn’t going to message or contact him. She reasoned that “If he likes me, he’d make the move.” The weeks past and she heard nothing, leaving Rebecca a tad disappointed, thinking she’d clearly read more into the experience than Joe did.


Then finally 6 weeks after a post Rebecca made about a HUGE excess water bill due to a cracked pipe under the driveway, Joe contacted her with some advice. They got talking and exchanged numbers and he asked her for another walk with the dogs, and dinner the same night. Apparently, Joe thought She’d have a partner and needed to make sure Rebecca was single before he asked her out. She felt embarrassed saying “let’s go to the RSL club – I like it there and it is relaxing.” Little did she know it was LITERALLY Joe’s second home.


That was the first day of their new life. A new best friend, a crazy lover with an insatiable desire for life. They moved in together about 9 months later.

During the last 5 years they’ve had their share of ups and down – over 30 years of policing, long hours for them both with shift work and blended families – it served to provide plenty of hurdles. The one thing that never faltered was their strong bond and connection. A connection that made overcoming hurdles worthwhile. They are imperfect but it works.


Rebecca is untidy BUT a GERMAPHOBE (not a bad thing for a theatres nurse)

Joe is tidy but isn’t concerned AT ALL about germs (this drives Rebecca to distraction)

Joe hogs the remote and channel surfs between multiple games shows.

Rebecca barely watches TV and will be busy creating a mess somewhere like making a new outfit.

Joe likes Golf – Rebecca LOATHES Golf.

Joe likes to tell Rebecca how to drive – Joe has road rage on steroids.

Rebecca has a sweet tooth – joe isn’t into sweets at all.

Joe support the Bulldogs and Rebecca supports the Dragons, which highlights that sometimes they can both be wrong.

BUT What works for Joe and Rebecca?

They both love STAR WARS (HUGE fans)-

they share political views – similar mind sets on most ideologies.

They are both crazy animal lovers.

They are both physical in nature and enjoy walking and adventuring in new places with hiking and 4WD.

They both have had jobs serving the community.

They have learnt how to manage / complement each other’s short falls or difficult traits.

They are great lovers and friends.

They make each other laugh.


They share common goals in their desires to travel the world and share new experiences.

Now, 5 years later, they are here getting married – Cupids arrows hitting the mark on that beach almost 5 years ago to the day- Cupid continued to hit them with a hammer after Joseph caught the garter AND the bouquet at their friends Emma and Max’s wedding –

even though Joe’s beautifully planned proposal in Paris was quashed by COVID – he still managed to make it special by involving the dogs into his wedding proposal where they’d first met on the beach by getting the dogs to dig a hole and placing the ring in the hole.


They laugh a lot – sometimes they argue – but there is one thing that is rock solid strong and that is their love for one another and desire to grow old together. They say at their age, they had no hesitation choosing to spend the best years- exploring all life has to offer.

Couple standing in front of Mark Reynolds Celebrant during wedding ceremony

Jaycee-Leigh and Joel

Photo: Hawthorne Creative
Jaycee-Leigh and Joel met in August of 2017 through mutual friends. After talking for a while, Joel asked Jaycee-Leigh on a date, they went to Nandos for dinner then for Gelato afterwards for dessert. I asked them both what was their first impression of each other. Jaycee-Leigh said she thought Joel’s voice was too high pitched and that he was very quiet and shy. Joel said he thought Jaycee-Leigh looked good, he thought she was really nice and easy to talk to. They went on two more dates then agreed they didn’t like each other.

Shortly after Jaycee-Leigh went on a trip to Cairns, but they kept in touch, talking regularly but still in agreement that they click better as friends. When Jaycee-Leigh came back from Cairns the two still hung out for a further 3 months as friends. Joel would regularly come to visit with Jaycee-Leigh.

Joel used to come over a lot to Jaycee-Leigh’s house, so much so that her dad said he always seems to put in a lot of effort to come and see you. After this, the two decided to give it a go.

Jaycee-Leigh and Joel enjoy going on picnics. On October 31, 2021, for Halloween (one of Jaycee-Leighs favourite events), Joel arranged to take Jaycee-Leigh for a picnic at Kangaroo Point. Jaycee-Leigh thought they were meeting her parents for dinner but what she didn’t know was that Joel was planning to propose. Joel had previously asked Jaycee-Leigh’s dad for permission for which he gave his blessing saying, “Yes, but she is a lot of work.” With help from Charmaine, Bianca and others the plan was put into action. With Simons help, Joel had arranged for a ring to be made for Jaycee-Leigh. The picnic was setup with pumpkins carved out to say, “will you marry me?”

When they arrived at the park Joel said let’s go over to your sister to find out where we are meeting your parents. Jaycee-Leigh walked past the picnic initially. When she turned back around Joel was on his knee ready to ask the question. Through tears of joy Jaycee-Leigh said yes. After their picnic they went to meet Jaycee-Leigh’s family. She wasted no time telling them she was engaged to which they replied, “We know, we watched the whole thing from afar.”

I asked if the two had any funny stories and when they started dating, Jaycee-Leigh told me that Joel hates shopping especially at Christmas and recalls a time where Jaycee-Leigh, Bianca and Joel were looking at Baubles when in frustration at how long it was taking Joel threw down the baubles in a tantrum, they flew everywhere and walked off. Bianca’s partner Nathan was disappointed that he missed out on the drama… again.

I asked what plans they had for the future, and they said travelling is a priority, though not to go camping it would seem as Jaycee-Leigh hates camping as glamping in a nice hotel is more her thing. They had planned to go to Las Vegas for Bianca’s wedding, but Covid ruined that. Jaycee-Leigh loves to travel and has done a lot of travel before meeting Joel. She would love to take him to some of those places so they can share those experiences together especially to the UK to meet more of Jaycee-Leighs family who live there. She would really love for him to meet her nan.

We touched briefly on the topic of children; Jaycee-Leigh says she has always been a bit iffy on children as they scare her but then said they will probably have one.

Joel has recently completed his apprenticeship and is now a qualified carpenter. Jaycee-Leigh has completed her law degree and some day she hopes to have her own law firm which Joel is expected to build. They also plan to build a house together, which I am guessing Joel also has to build?

As I said, theirs is a beautiful story and I am sure they will make many happy memories together.

Mark Reynolds Celebrant at small signing table with Peter and Maddy

Maddy and Peter

Photo: Pipi and Palm.
Peter and Maddy met at a Christmas party in December of 2014. Well, there is some debate over when the two actually met, Peter says they met at the party where he was dressed as Santa. Maddy says it doesn’t count as she thought he was European and they didn’t talk. Maddy says they met in February of 2015 when they were at Lawn Bowls as the two are part of the same circle of friends. Maddy says this is where she actually had a conversation with Peter and she hadn’t even realised she met him previously.

That then lead to a group camping trip where Peter gave Maddy a lift which I am told was 5 hours of Maddy talking. Things were going well, or so it seemed as the two saw each other regularly as they were both in the same circle of friends. Around April, Maddy asked Peter to go out for a coffee, but Peter said “no, as he didn’t want to make it complicated with friends.” They still continued to chat however and were even texting one another while Maddy was on a couple of Tinder dates.

It wasn’t until May at a friend’s going away party that Peter came to his senses. While the two were taking a walk Peter kissed Maddy. They walked back to the party holding hands and Maddy recalls she was very confused asking Peter, “does this mean you like me?” and he said “Yes”. About a week after they went on their first date to Mt Cootha for an evening picnic. Three weeks later, Peter told Maddy he loved her. It seems all Peter’s previous reservations went right out the window very quickly 😊

One year later they moved in together and after 5 years together Peter asked Maddy’s dad if he could marry her and he said yes. On September 19 of 2020 they went for a drive up to Mt Cootha and Peter got down on one knee and asked Maddy to marry him, her response was, “are you for real?” then said “yes” with the biggest smile on her face.

In the 5 years they have been together, Peter and Maddy have had quite a few adventures. Peter introduced Maddy to diving and they have even been diving in Iceland between two Tectonic Plates, they went on a five-week trip to Europe and Maddy eventually wore Peter down to get a dog and so Penny joined the family on the provision that she didn’t sleep on the bed. I am told that by Christmas that year Penny had settled in nicely on her spot on the bed.

I asked if either had any annoying habits or quirks and they said not really, though they did have a couple of funny stories for me. In particular, the time where Maddy forgot where she parked her car for 8 days, she had called Peter to say she didn’t know where it was. On Peter’s advice she went in to work to find she had left it in the carpark and had to pay for 8 days of parking to get it out.

Maddy then told me that Peter is colour blind, Maddy says it has made clothes shopping interesting and a few of his choices have been questionable. While suit shopping for the wedding, Peter wanted a Navy suit and showed Maddy one he had selected. She asked, “what colour is that to you?” and he said “blue.” She asked if could see the massive red pinstripe to which he replied “no.”

Lastly Maddy shared with me that Peter had RSVP’d to his own wedding and even submitted his dietary requirements and their song requests. After listening to their story, it is clear that they compliment each other very well and I have no doubt that they will be able to achieve anything they put their minds to in the years ahead.

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