With the topic of marriage currently in the news, the question may arise: “How do I become a marriage celebrant?”
It is not that simple… You need to become qualified and become an authorised celebrant under Part IV of the Marriage Act, 1961.
Ministers of religion are registered as marriage celebrants after being nominated by their church or faith and they are able to marry persons in accordance with their church or faith throughout Australia. Chaplains in the armed services have the ability to solemnise marriages overseas where one person is in the Australian Defence Force.
Registrars of births, deaths and marriages are automatically marriage celebrants by their office, and most registrars of courts in rural NSW are able to perform marriages. Most Australian diplomatic or consular officers in foreign countries are also authorised to perform marriages in those countries.
Otherwise, to become a fully certified and authorised marriage celebrant, you will need to be at least 18 years of age, be of good character, attend the correct training and showcase your knowledge of marriage legislation. The training is a Certificate IV in Celebrancy which can be obtained at many registered training organisations including TAFE.
After vetting by Police and paying fees, a person becomes registered as a marriage celebrant and may solemnise marriages at any place in Australia at any time subject to the act and provided the bride and groom give at least one month’s notice to the celebrant in writing of their intention to marriage. Instant marriages are not possible.
If you have questions on the Marriage Law or anything else, please contact any of our solicitors at Matthews Williams.