Does the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in Victoria have a FAQ section for weddings?

Yes, you can find it at the following link:

I've never been married before? What do I do now?

Regardless of whether this is a "green" wedding or you've emulated Elizabeth Taylor, this is the first time you will be marrying your fiancé!

An outline of a Basic Wedding Ceremony can be viewed on my blog here.

You need to sign legal documentation on 3 occasions prior to getting married:

1. You must complete and lodge a Notice of Intended Marriage Form (NOIM).

This will be completed at our initial meeting.

You can find a copy of this form to print here.

I need to sight your original birth certificate or passport. If you were born in Victoria, you can apply online for your birth certificate via the following link:

If you are not Australian, I can sight your Overseas Passport as an alternative to your birth certificate. A certified translation is required if your birth certificate/passport is written in a language other than English.

If previously married, I am required to sight your original Divorce papers, or Death Certificate of a former spouse.

2. You both need to sign the Declaration prior to the ceremony. I usually ensure this is done at the rehearsal, otherwise a mutually agreeable time will be organised.

3. On the day of your wedding, you will sign three marriage certificates.

At our initial meeting, we will discuss the personalised requirements for your special day and I will ensure all your apprehensions are alleviated!

I currently live overseas but want to get married in Australia? What do I have to do?

You must complete a NOIM (You can find a copy of this form to print here) and have it signed in the presence of the following:

  • An Australian Diplomatic Officer
  • An Australian Consular Officer
  • A notary public
  • An employee of the Commonwealth authorised under paragraph 3(c) of the Consular Fees Act 1955, or
  • An employee of the Australian Trade Commission authorised under paragraph 3 (d) of the Consular Fees Act 1955.

This NOIM can be emailed to me no later than 1 month prior to your wedding and the original form must be given to me to forward with other documentation to Births, Deaths and Marriages for your official marriage registration.

You don't have to be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident of Australia to legally marry here. You can find marriage visa information on the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website, if you hope to live in Australia after your marriage.

Do I need to live in Australia for the 1 month prior to the wedding?

No. As your celebrant, I need to have received your NOIM 1 month prior to your wedding, but you do not need to live here in this time.

Can I fill my Notice of Intended Marriage form before my divorce is finalised?

Yes, you can, but you can't be married until I sight your original final divorce papers.

How long does all this take?!

  • The initial meeting can take between 1-2 hours.
  • The questionnaire will take you a while to complete – the length of your answers will determine the length of the personalised section of the wedding.
  • The rehearsal will take approximately 1 hour.
  • The length of the actual wedding ceremony is determined by your requirements – but on average a ceremony with a personalised section and a couple of readings is 20-30 minutes.
  • The registration of your marriage with Births, Deaths and Marriages takes approximately 10 working days. This varies with the number of weddings processed at the time of your ceremony - and in peak wedding season this can take up to 25 working days.

Do we need to have a rehearsal?

The Code of Practice requires me to offer a rehearsal, however, not all couples will find this necessary for their style of ceremony. You will find more information regarding rehersals here.

Where can we get married by a civil marriage celebrant?

Almost anywhere!

You have complete freedom of choice - a wedding function centre, garden, beach, park, or your own home.

You may need to confirm with the owners of the site (e.g. local council) regarding booking requirements, fees or restrictions.

Do we have to attend a Marriage Education course?

No. However, I must provide each person with a document outlining the obligations and consequences of marriage. This document is in the form of a brochure "Happily Ever Before and After", and indicates the availability of marriage education and counselling and other important matters concerning marriage.

Once married, what do we need to do?

On the day of your wedding, you will sign three marriage certificates. The party certificate is given to you as a record of your marriage.

I am legally obliged to register your marriage with the registry of births, deaths and marriages within fourteen days of your ceremony. I will notify you via email once I have been informed of your official marriage registration. This can take 10 working days, however, is dependent on the number of marriages processed at the time of your ceremony.

The certificate issued by the registry of births, deaths and marriages is required for many name change and official purposes. You can apply for a copy of this certificate from the registry once your wedding is registered via the following link:

BDM charges a fee for this certificate.

Which signature do I use to sign the documents at my wedding ceremony?

The same signature you used to sign the Notice of Intended Marriage form (ie your name prior to this marriage)

How do I change my name after the marriage ceremony?

At your wedding you will receive a Presentation Marriage Certificate (Party Certificate). Unfortunately, most government departments and banks will not accept this for a name change. You will need to obtain an Official Marriage Certificate issued by Births Deaths and Marriages once your marriage has been registered. BDM charges a fee for this certificate.

What is involved in a basic wedding ceremony?

You can find the outline of a basic wedding ceremony on my blog here.

What are your rates?

You can find information regarding my rates here.

Catherine Mueller

8 View Terrace
Sunbury VIC 3429
Phone: 03 9740 2964
Mobile: 0409 013 860


Bridget and Heath - April 2011

The relaxed nature of the ceremony was exactly what we were looking for. The time that went into designing the ceremony, so it was tailored to us, was appreciated. All...

Rob and Penny - November 2011

All our guests gave us very positive feedback. We liked that Cathy searched for so many good readings, right up until the end. Rob and Penny Seppelt Winery, Great Western – November...

Mark and Emily - November 2011

"In spite of our lack of romance and clear instructions, Cathy managed to present us and the ceremony exactly how we were envisioning. Well done! A number of guests and...

Lahiru and Melanie - March 2012

Cathy offered great advice and suggestions when we were planning our wedding. Our personal information was used appropriately within the ceremony and everything went to plan just the way we...

Belinda and Paul - March 2013

"Hi Catherine thank you so much for being part of our special day and standing steadfast through the rain! Everyone has said what a great ceremony it was, I think...

Andrew and Michelle - March 2013

"Thank you for the amazing ceremony you created for us – it seemed like only Andrew and I were there. It made the day so special. We loved adding our...

Joanne and Dominic - May 2013

"Thank you so much for giving us the most wonderful ceremony. You made our special day so relaxed and joyous, even our guests thought you were amazing. We would strongly recommend...

Frances and Rocky - July 2013

"We were married at Sherwood Receptions on the 21.07.13 by Catherine. It was an absolutely wonderful ceremony – just how we wanted it to flow. Love and peace was oozing...

Robbie and Tiffany - November 2013

"Catherine, Thanks so much for the beautiful job you did as celebrant at our wedding. It was a beautiful ceremony and you were really supportive in the lead up to...

Matty and Jesi - November 2011

Catherine married my husband and I in November 2011 in Moama. We were originally supposed to get married in Gisborne but when the kitchen of our venue burnt down we...

Peter and Beverly - March 2014

Thank you so much for a beautiful ceremony on Friday we couldn't have planned it better. Our whole family had an unforgettable time. We are very grateful for your contribution...

Mathew and Karen - September 2012

Cath gave us a wonderful celebration full of warmth and love. She made sure that it incorporated all elements that we wanted and the end result was a ceremony that...

Paul and Gemma - January 2014

Thankyou for being a part of our special day. You made our ceremony special to us and made the preparation for the day easier. Our wedding was all...

Peter and Teresa - October 2015

Peter and Teresa - Oct 2015 "Catherine performed our ceremony with great professionalism and friendliness and settled both our nerves with her pleasant voice and lovely smile....

Funeral of Robert Bragagnolo - November 2014

Thank you so very much Catherine for the beautiful memorial service you conducted today. Your empathy and compassion shone through to all family and friends as you steered us through...