Mark Roberts    0408 789 715      mark.r@mycelebrant.biz           Patricia Charlton    0414 959 183      patricia.c@mycelebrant.biz

What you need to know about getting married overseas

 

Writing this article, we hope that we can give you some considerations about marrying overseas, how you can still have your overseas wedding ceremony, and have security and peace of mind that your marriage is legitimate.

 

Marrying the person you love in a tropical paradise like Bali or Thailand would be an amazing experience, but marriage in overseas countries can be complex, costly and their may be inconsistencies between the countries laws and Australian law which may void your marriage in Australia.     If for any reason your marriage is not legal, or their are concerns over the legitimacy of your marriage, this can affect your partners security and your will.

 

Things you should know about Oversea's Weddings...

1.
 
Subject to foreign Marriage Laws

The rights and liberties you have in Australia, do not apply in a foreign country.  

You are a foreign national, and the marriage requirements for you are more complex and you have to comply with the laws and customs of the foreign country, regardless if you agree with them or not.     You most likely will have to have a religious ceremony.

If there are any concerns regarding the legitimacy of your marriage, you may be up for thousands of dollars in legal costs to find an answer.

 
2.
 
Complex Overseas Marriage Laws

Marriage laws in foreign countries are often complex and have reglious conditions (for example under indonesian law couples must be of the same religion and you be required to have two ceremonies; a religious ceremony and civil ceremony). 
 

3.
 
Religious Ceremony

Depending on the religious faith you choose to be married under (ie Catholic, Muslim, Buddishim, Hindu) their will be additional requirements.

You may even be required to provide a letter from a priest or minister of religion:

  • confirming your maritial status and/or pre-maritial course completion
  • confirming your religious induction (ie baptism) into your faith, or you may have to undergo a religious induction prior to your wedding ceremony.

Any letters may need to be translated into a foreign language.   In such instances, you will need to pay for a NAATI accredited translator to translate and certify the documents.

 

4.
 
Proof of Single Status

As foreign nationals, you may be require you to provide evidence that you and your partner are single.    

This may require you to perform a Marriage Search which can cost several hundreds of dollars, depending on your age.   

Any results may need to be translated into a foreign language.   In such instances, you will need to pay for a NAATI accredited translator to translate and certify the documents.

 

5.
 
Passports and Birth Certificates

As foreign nationals, you will be required to provide copies of your birth certificates and passports, and your witnesses will also be required to provide copies of their passports.

These copies may need to be translated into a foreign language.   In such instances, you will need to pay for a NAATI accredited translator to translate and certify the documents.

 

6.
 
Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage

As foreign national, you may be require you to provide a Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage issued from a government authority and you may need to have the certificate (and other documents) translated into their language.  

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade  (DFAT) in Australia can issue these, but some countries may only accept them if they are issued by the Australian embassy in their country, which means you have to attend to this when you arrive in the foreign country.

These certificates may need to be translated into a foreign language.   In such instances, you will need to pay for a NAATI accredited translator to translate and certify the documents.

 

overseas1

 

overseas2

7.
 
Overseas Marriage Certificate

At the time of your wedding you may receive a Certificate of Solenisation.    This does not mean you are legally married, because your marriage needs to be registered with foreign government authorities and they will issue a Marriage Certificate which may be in a foreign language, for example:  Indonesian or Thai.  

Therefore to use the Marriage Certificate, you will need to pay for a NAATI accredited translator to translate and certify your foreign Marriage Certificate into English before you can use it in Australia, and you may need to obtain additional statement of authenticity from the country's embassy officials, and if this statement is in a foreign language, then you will also need to pay to have it translated.

You may even discover when you return to Australia the paperwork you have received is not a legal marriage.

 

8.
 
Changing your Surname

You may find it difficult to use your foreign Marriage Certificate (and the translated version) as evidence to change your name.   

As a result you may find that you have to perform an expensive Change of Name applications with the registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

 

9.
 
 
Marriage Registration & Lost Marriage Certificate

When you marry in a foreign country, your marriage is registered with the foreign Government Authority of the Country where your marriage took place.     Your marriage registration and history will not be accessible by the Australian Government.

In 2020:

  • Indonesia population was estimated at 273,500,000 million people and there were 1,740,000 million weddings,
  • Thialand population was estimated at 69,800,000 million people and there were 271,000 weddings.

Should you loose your Marriage Certificate, you will find that you have to deal directly with the foreign Government Authority, or engage an foreign solicitor to find and obtain a copy of your marriage certificate.    You will need to know the location of the district office or provence where your marriage was registered and be able to provide the correct translation of your names into the foreign language.

10.
 
Australian Marriage Act

Your overseas marriage will usually be recognised as valid in Australia if at the time you married:

  • your marriage was recognised as valid under the law of the country in which you married, and
  • it would have been recognised as a valid marriage under Australian law if you had married in Australia.

In Australia, Section 48 of the Marriage Act 1961 defines a number of reasons that will cause a marriage in Australia to be invalid.    Celebrant's in Australia understand the Marriage Act and the reasons that can cause your marriage to be invalid.      Should an oversea's marriage be in breach of section 48 of the Marriage Act 1961, your marriage may be considered invalid in Australia.

     

 

September 2019

The Telegraph

Thomas Cook collapse: Wedding plans in tatters, families separated and cabin crew in tears

Learn more

 

December 2017

News.com.au

Sydney couple lose out on $70k after failing to enter Bali for wedding

Learn more

 

October 2014

The West Australian

Bali Wedding Plans in Tatters

Learn more

 

March 2012

Trip Advisor

Lost Marriage Certificate

Learn more

 

Couple 4

A Solution

 

For as little as $390.00, we can perform an intimate wedding ceremony for you, at your home in Australia.

You can still have your amazing tropical wedding ceremony experience with your family and friends without being forced to have a religious ceremony according to a specific faith, and you will not have to deal with the complexities associated with foreign weddings for foreign nationals.


... and, you will have the peace of mind that your Australian Marriage is legitimate, and is recorded bythe Australian Government.

  

This is our commitment to you!

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 Servicing Perth South Metropolitan Area, Mandurah Peel Region and South West Region - Western Australia