Civil Marriage in Australia

In Australia marrying in a civil ceremony means simply that you marry according to law (the Marriage Act 1961) rather than according to the rites of a particular religious faith. 70% of weddings in Australia are civil marriages. About 10% of these are conducted in Registry Offices or Court Houses. The remainder, nearly two-thirds of all weddings in Australia, are conducted by Civil Celebrants.

Australia has a well-established Civil Celebrant Program where individuals appointed by the Australian government are authorised to officiate at marriage ceremonies 24/7 at any place of the couple’s choosing. What this means is that unlike other countries (with the exception of New Zealand) a civil ceremony is not necessarily short, standard, held in a courthouse or registry office and officiated by a Registrar, Marriage Officer, Judge or other officer of the Court. Rather, it can be the romantic, individual wedding of your dreams.

A very strong principle of the Civil Celebrant Program is that you have choice, a ceremony that meets your needs, expresses your values and beliefs, and reflects your style, as long as you comply with the very minimal legal requirements - which basically amount to giving a full month's notice of your intention to marry, providing your celebrant with the required documents to prove your date and place of birth, your identity, and that you are free to marry (if you have been previously married), signing legal declarations before the ceremony takes place, and including the statements required by the Marriage Act in the ceremony.

Warm and Wonderful Weekday/Weekend Weddings are civil ceremonies with romantic and creative inclusions, incorporating vows that are very personal to you in a ceremony that is tailored for you by Jennifer Cram.

In many ways a Warm and Wonderful Weekday/Weekend Wedding is simpler and easier to organise than a Registry Office ceremony  because you are not restricted to personal attendance during business hours. It is also a viable alternative to a Registry Office wedding in terms of cost. And it offers you so much more  - your choice of time, place, and style, and the opportunity to express your unique relationship and commitment to one another through your vows.

Dear Jenny, On Murray and Alice's behalf I wanted to write to say special thanks for the ceremony you conducted on 9th January. It was indeed special and bore no resemblance to what would have been had they chosen to use the services of the Registry Office. - Judy (mother of groom). Visa wedding held in Judy's lovely rural garden.

We would like to thank you for everything that you did, it was awesome.  Our warmest regards - Greg & Rita, who came from New Zealand to be married in sunny Brisbane surrounded by family members and dozens of kangaroos.

Our favourite part of the ceremony was how you made us and our families relaxed and comfortable. We were very impressed with the personal touches you added. The way you performed the ceremony was memorable and the assistance you gave us with the legal paperwork was outstanding. - Pru and Simon who married in their lovely garden with a shortening of time.

Thank you so much again for making our day so special. You were amazing for us, I'm so glad to have chosen you. If I get the chance to recommend a celebrant any time soon, you can be sure yours will be the name I give :) - Ashleigh & Darren, who had a very intimate ceremony on the Wynnum foreshore with their mothers and several dozen pelicans as witnesses.