Australia Marriage Laws

Australia Outline

Congratulations! If you've found yourself at this page it is likely that you are either planning to be married or have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in Australia. The information provided below will walk you through the steps one must follow to become a minister and perform a valid wedding ceremony in Australia.

1 How to Become an Ordained Minister in Australia

If you haven't already, you should get ordained online with the Universal Life Church. Ordination is free and can be completed in just a matter of minutes. Thousands of legally valid marriages are performed by ULC ministers around the world every year. Begin the process by clicking the big blue button below!

2 How to Officiate a Marriage in Australia

Next, you should contact the office of your local marriage authority. Let them know that you are a minister who was ordained online with the Universal Life Church, and ask what they will require of you to officiate a legal marriage.

3 License to Marry in Australia

After you've contacted your marriage authority, you should visit our online store to purchase whatever documentation will be required. We typically advise ministers in Australia to get an Ordination Package. Please note that the Universal Life Church offers an international FedEx shipping option that will allow you to receive your ministerial products anywhere in Australia. Additionally, please attempt to leave at least 1 month between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials in advance. Also note that, as part of the Australia marriage process (more on this later) there are some forms you will need to fill out with the couple well in advance (more than a month) of the ceremony; namely, the Intended Marriage Form.

4 How to Perform a Wedding in Australia

Now that you've done all of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! While several ministers of the Universal Life Church have registered and acted as wedding celebrants in Australia, the Universal Life Church's legal standing there is not as firm as it is in the United States and elsewhere. We are actively seeking stronger recognition, however, and would appreciate you contacting us if you think you could be of service in this regard.

At the Universal Life Church we receive several calls from wedding officiants in Australia, after they've received their license to marry by getting ordained online, asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony. Once the legal matters have been taken care of, officiating a wedding (while a sometimes-daunting task) can be a great deal of fun. We would suggest that new Australian wedding celebrants concerned about the ceremony peruse one of our helpful wedding guides. The minister training section of our website should offer a helpful refresher for more experienced ministers.

Australia Flag

Australia Marriage Code

Marriage in Australia is governed rigorously by the Australian Government's Attorney General's office. The link provided below to their official website lays out in detail the process one must undergo to legally act as a wedding celebrant in the country. Again, the Universal Life Church is actively seeking recognition as a valid religious denomination in the country. Note: as of 2017, same-sex marriage is legal throughout Australia.
Only an authorised celebrant can legally perform your marriage.

Authorised celebrants perform civil and religious ceremonies. There are three kinds of authorised celebrants:

Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrants who perform civil and religious ceremonies (for independent religious organisations). The fees charged by these celebrants are not fixed. Prices may vary between celebrants. They are also required to follow the Code of practice for marriage celebrants.
Code of practice for marriage celebrants [DOC 123KB]
Code of practice for marriage celebrants [PDF 106KB]
Ministers of religion of a recognised denomination who perform religious ceremonies. These celebrants are regulated by state and territory registries of births, deaths and marriages and their respective religious organisation.
State officials who perform civil ceremonies.

View the Australia Statutes on the official state site
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