Marriage, according to Australian law, is the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.

While same sex couples can have commitment ceremonies committing to their relationship, they are unable to legalise their relationship with marriage.

Requirements of a marriage to be legal

  • Neither party must be lawfully married to someone else
  • The parties must not form a prohibited relationship
  • The consent of each party has not been obtained by duress or fraud
  • Neither party is mentally incapable of understanding the nature and effect of the marriage ceremony
  • Both parties must be of marriageable age (see below)


Under no circumstances can two persons under the age of 18 years marry each other.

If a person under the age of 18 years wishes to marry, then  that person must have the necessary consents required under the Marriage Act 1961 – permission of their parents or guardians plus an order of a judge or magistrate.

The celebrant must sight these documents before proceeding with the marriage.

Identifying documentation

All documents used as proof of identity can be in English , Spanish or Italian.


The law requires that two witnesses, each of whom must be over 18 years old, must be present at the marriage.

Any person may act as a witness including your parents or other family members.  Your marriage celebrant cannot act as a witness.

Where and when you can marry

You may marry anywhere and on any day you choose.  However, the marriage must be solemnised in Australia or within Australian territorial waters.


Your full name must be used during some stage of the marriage ceremony - preferably at the beginning.  While your surnames may be omitted when saying your vows, nicknames may not be used.  Nicknames however, may be used elsewhere in the ceremony






 Brisbane Weddings & Ceremonies

Adriana Turbay-Tiratel CMC 

Ph: +61 7 3800 6921

Mob: 0412 031 416