If you have chosen or are planning to choose a celebrant for your wedding, I thought I would share something that a couple recently encountered.
The groom mentioned that their celebrant had told them she was required by law to have a second celebrant as a witness on the day. Something about this didn’t seem right to me, so I asked their permission to verify this for them.
After speaking to registered civil marriage celebrants, it was evident that this was not true if the celebrant is in fact registered.
You can have other’s taking roles in the ceremony but there are three roles that must be carried out legally by a registered celebrant during the ceremony. The actual ‘Vows’, the ‘Reminder’ (that you are entering into a solemn decision) and of course the ‘Pronouncement’ (you are now man and wife). There are of course legal requirements that also need to be completed by a registered celebrant, before and after your wedding too.
The bride & groom were naturally shocked when they realised the celebrant they choose was not registered. Even more scarey was when we looked into it further we were told that a registered celebrant had to lodge the ‘notice of intention to get married forms’ for the marriage to be legal. As the unregistered celebrant had already lodge this form, the bride & groom needed to find a registered celebrant to relodge the form on their behalf, otherwise the wedding would not have been legal in the eyes of Australian Law.
This is one part of your wedding day that you don’t want to get wrong, so make sure you select a professional, competent and legally registered civil marriage celebrant. If you have concerns on what the laws are in Australia or if your not sure that your celebrant is in fact registered, then you can check out the Attorney-General’s Department www.ag.gov.au and follow and follow the links for more details.
May your wedding be a happy and legal one!