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Wedding Banns & Wills

Getting married is an exciting time but it requires a lot of planning. The bride and groom must decide where the marriage will occur and whether the ceremony will be a religious or civil event.  The law states that people wishing to marry legally in Australia or another country must comply with the following requirements:

Both people must be 18 years of age or older.  People over 16 years of age may be married, but they will require consent from both a judge or magistrate and both sets of parents.  Two people under 18 years of age cannot marry each other.

In Australia, you must be married in the presence of an authorised person.  This can be a minister of religion or a marriage celebrant.

A Notice of Intended Marriage – Form 13 must be completed and lodged with the authorised person who is performing the ceremony (proposed minister or celebrant) at least one calendar month, but no more than 18 months, before the preferred date of marriage.  The notice form can also be obtained from the proposed minister or celebrant performing the ceremony or visiting the local Births, Deaths and Marriages office in your state.  For contact details and more information, refer to

The bride and groom must show the proposed minister or celebrant documentary proof that they are 18 years or older.  That proof must be an original birth certificate if born in Australia.  If not born in Australia, then the proposed celebrant can accept a valid passport in lieu of a birth certificate.  Citizenship papers and change of name document may also be applicable.
If either person has been married before, that person must show the proposed minister or celebrant proof that they are free to remarry.  That proof is usually a decree nisi of dissolution of marriage that has become absolute or a death certificate.

If you are planning to marry overseas, you need to be aware that laws regarding marriage vary from country to country and legal complications can arise. After you have decided on the country in which you will be getting married you need to then discuss the marriage laws of that country with a consular official.  For contact details, refer to the Index of Consulates and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade information to overseas marriages can be viewed at Smartraveller.

The marriage certificate is signed immediately after the conclusion of the marriage service. This is witnessed and signed by two people over the age of 18.  You keep a copy and your minister or celebrant forwards the necessary paperwork to the Registry Office to be processed and certified within 14 days of the date of marriage.  Only after these papers have been processed are you legally married. 

Getting married automatically cancels all previous wills.  You and your spouse should consider getting a will.

For more information:

The Wedding Registry

The Legal Side of things…

Marriages occurring in WA since 1841 are registered in the Western Australian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. The Marriage Act 1961 requires the authorized celebrant, within 14 days of the date of marriage, to forward the marriage papers to the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages for registration.

To get in touch with Perth’s Wedding Registry, contact
Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages
Department of the Attorney General
Level 10, 141 St Georges Terrace
PERTH  WA  6000
Phone: 1300 305 021
Fax: (08) 9264 1599

PO Box 7720
Cloisters Square
Perth WA 6850
Between 8.30am and 4.30pm Monday to Friday and excluding public holidays.

  • On payment of a fee and subject to eligibility, the Western Australian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages can provide a certificate from a marriage.
  • When applying for a wedding certificate your original identification documents must be provided.
  • A Notice of intended marriage form must be lodged prior to the wedding. The notice form is then obtained from the proposed celebrant.
  • The marriageable age in Australia is 18 years for both men and women.