Frequently Asked

QUESTIONS

LOOKING FOR A CELEBRANT?

How do I get in touch with you?


Because I have a 9-to-5 day job, the best way to get in contact with me is to send an email message. You can use the contact form on this site or email rebeccagiles.civilcelebrant@gmail.com Remember, I am here to support you 100%. There is no question too stupid.




How can I secure Bec as my celebrant?


So, you've read About Becky, you've decided I'm the celebrant for you and want to book one of my Services. Step 1: Get in Contact - to get your questions answered and get a quote. Step 3: Confirm your booking. I will send you an invoice and mark a tenative booking in the calander. Step 4: Pay a $300 deposit to secure your booking (this means that no one else can take your date!). P.S. You're so awesome.




When should I book the celebrant?


Keeping in mind that you need to give an authorised marriage celebrant AT LEAST one month's notice of your wedding - you should not leave booking your celebrant until the last minute. As soon as you have confirmed your ceremony date, venue and time, you should start thinking about your celebrant. Also remember - some wedding celebrants are kept very busy marrying people. The earlier you book, the more likely you are to get your first choice of celebrant. If you send me an inquiry and I'm not available on your wedding date - I'll give you a list of local celebrants who are :)




Where can I get more information about marriage?


If you would like to find out more about marriage and marriage law, you might like to visit:

For more information on changing your name after getting married, visit the NSW Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages, Change of Name section (or your state/territory equivalent).




How quickly can we get married?


The short answer is - you need to give at least ONE MONTH notice. You need to provide an authorised marriage celebrant (like me) with a Notice of Intended Marriage between one and eighteen months before your wedding day. But don't stress too much - if I am your celebrant, I will be working with you to complete all the necessary documentation in the required time frames! There are very limited circumstances in which a prescribed authority may grant you a shortening of time to less than one month's notice. But be wary - a shortening of time is not guarateed and you'll need evidence to support your need. Get in touch with your celebrant if this applies to you. For more information, see the Marriage Section of the Attorney General's Department Website.




Do you do same-sex weddings?


I hate that people have to ask... but I understand that some wedding providers are a little stuck in the past or hold some alternate personal beliefs... so, just to make it crystal clear... YES, I DO! I love love and will happily marry two people of any sexuality, legal age, gender, culture, religion etc. (as long as you're both legally able to be married of course!) Fun legal fact... Before March 2018, civil celebrants who did not wish to officiate same-sex marriages due to their religious beliefs, had to register to be re-classifed as "Religious Marriage Celebrants." Celebrants are legally required to make clear whether they are a "Religious Marriage Celebrant" or a "Marriage Celebrant". Any Marriage Celebrant who refused to perform your ceremony on the basis that you are LGBTQI+ is discriminating against you - which is ILLEGAL!




Can we legally get married?


To be legally married in Australia, you must: - Not be married to somone else (being previously married is fine, you will just need to provide proof of your divorce, anullment or the death of your previous spouse). - Not be marrying a relative who is a lineal descendant (i.e. not your parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother or sister). - Be at least 18 years old (unless a court has approved a marriage where on party is aged between 16 and 18 years). - Understand what marriage means and freely consent to marrying. - Use specific words during the ceremony (I will make sure this happens, that's my job!). - Give written notice of their intention to marry to thier authorised celebrant, within the required time frame (See: How quickly can we get married?). If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of these requirements, get in touch and I can provide some guidance. CITIZENSHIP You don't have to be an Australian citizen or permanent resident of Australia to marry here. You can find marriage visa information on the Department of Home Affairs website if you hope to live in Australia after your marriage. GENDER As of 9 December 2017, the right to marry in Australia will no longer be determined by sex or gender. Yew!! You can find more information on the Attorney General's Department Marriage Equality page.




How much does a marriage celebrant cost?


There is no "set price" for a wedding celebrant. Each celebrant decides their own fees depending on what services they offer, their percieved value and the local market. In Newcastle and the Hunter, wedding celebrants range anywhere from $650 to $1500+. I am not the cheapest wedding celebrant, but I am also not the most expensive. I have valued my time and reputation, with the services I offer, to formulate my current pricing. You could hire a cheap celebrant - and leave your guests unimpressed. You could hire the most expensive celebrant - and feel like you didn't get what you paid for. Or, you could hire someone like me - maybe I could be your porridge that is "just right". ;) Get in touch, and i'll send you my services and pricing document. Or, you can read by blog post on Celebrant Pricing




What "style" of celebrant are you?


Every celebrant does things a little differently - which is fantastic! because each couple is a little different. I am all about fun, relaxed, happy and heart-felt ceremonies. That are non-boring, non-denomentational and all about the couple. My aim is to make the process of getting married as easy, streamlined and enjoyable as possible. Check out my Services Page to get a feel for how I operate. You can also check out my blog - where you'll find some insights into my celebrant style. I might not be the celebrant for you - and that's totally ok. It's your day, your way :)




What locations do you cover?


I am based in Adamstown, a suburb in Newcastle, NSW. While I am legally able to perform marriage ceremonies all over Australia, at this stage I do not offer my services outside of NSW. My service area primarily includes: Newcastle & Lake Macquarie The Hunter Valley Port Stephens In my Contact Form, I ask for the Suburb you reside in, because if you live in these areas, our meeting can take place at your house! I have also perfomed ceremonies on the Central Coast and in Sydney. Please note that ceremonies outside of my usual service area, may incur an additional travel fee.





GETTING MARRIED

What is the process of getting married in Australia?


1) Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM)

Between ONE and EIGHTEEN MONTHS before your ceremony date, you and your partner must complete a Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM) form with your celebrant.

This form can be found online in PDF form here.

You and your partner must provide the celebrant with evidence of your date and place of birth, identity and the end of any previous marriages (see: What should I bring to our first meeting?).

As your celebrant, I will organise a time with you to complete the NOIM as soon as possible - this also gives us an opportunity to meet face to face!

2) Scripting of your ceremony

After you have completed your NOIM, I will begin working with you to write your perfect wedding ceremony.

Want to keep it simple? I have a number of pre-scripted ceremonies ready to go.

I will send you some "Homework" to complete - either together or seperately - so I can get to know your personal love story.

You'll have my full support along the way, for any questions, big ideas or nervous breakdowns. Becky Married Me never closes shop!

3) Declaration of No Legal Impediment to Marriage

I like to call this the "we're still good to go" form.

By signing the Declaration, you declare that you believe that you are of marriageable age, and that there is no legal impediment to your marriage.

(e.g. you haven't sneaky married someone else in the time between the NOIM and your wedding day)

You will both need to sign the declaration as close as practiable to your wedding ceremony - perhaps the evening before, the morning of - or I can sprint to the care as you arrive!

4) Your Wedding Day

On your wedding day, your celebrant will solemnise your marriage. Your celebrant will then ask you, your partner and your witnesses to sign up to three marriage certificates.

5) After the Ceremony

After your wedding, your marriage celebrant will register the marriage with the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in the State or Territory where your marriage took place.

For an outline of the process of getting married in Australia, have a read of the 'Happily Ever... Before and After' brochure.

This brochure is required to be provided to all couples getting married in Australia by their registered marriage celebrant.

6) Leave your celebrant a glowing review!

Ok, this part is totally optional.... but, if you're feeling generous and would like to leave Becky Married Me a review on Google or Facebook, you would make me the happiest celebrant in the world!

Also, I would LOVE for you to share some of your gorgeous photos from the day!

(See: How do I provide Feedback?)




What do we need to bring to our meeting?


Both parties will need to bring:

- Original Birth Certificate or Extract + Photo ID

OR

- Passport (expired is acceptable)

If either of you have been married before, or, go by a different name to what is on your ID, you will also need to bring along:

- Official change of name documentation (if you haven't changed your name officially, you will have to go by the name on your official identification documents).

- Divorce or death certificate for previous spouse

This is for the purpose of signing your Notice of Intended Marriage.

Take a look at the Notice to get a better understanding of the documentary requirements.

Feeling a bit confused? Get in touch.




What type of requests can I make for my ceremony?


My goal is to have your wedding ceremony be as unique as you are.

Of course, I have a go-to ceremony structure that you are able to copy, edit, tweak, delete etc.

During our meeting, I will let you know which parts of the ceremony you are legally required to include.

Other than that, the sky (as well as the venue's rules and the law) is the limit!

Can you write your own vows? - YES

Can you include cultural or religious rituals that have significance to you? - YES

Can you ditch walking down the aisle? - YES

Do you have to exchange rings? - NO

Can you include your children? - YES

Can you include your pets? - YES (as long as I am allowed to pat them)

Can you enter your ceremony on a unicycle? - YES

Can you include an interpretive dance that you've choreographed yourself? - YES

Can Nan perform a rap? - ABSOLUTELY

The only thing I don't do, is ceremony rehearsals.

Check out my blog articles on




How can I prove I'm divorced?


Please visit the Federal Circuit Court website for more informaiton on divorce.





 

YOUR CEREMONY AND BEYOND...

What type of PA do you use?


I use a MiPro MA-707 Portable Wireless PA system with stand and wireless microphone. The PA system has an AUX outlet and is avaliable for you to use for playing music from an iPod/iPhone/MP3 (remember that new iPhones do not have a headphone jack!) (Please Note: it is best to assign a designated person to control the music on your wedding day) If you have hired a videographer on your wedding day, they may request information about the PA system used for the ceremony (so they can record audio directly from the microphone). Information about the MiPro MA-707's specifications are avaliable on the MiPro website.




Applying for your Marriage Certificate with the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages


At the conclusion of your wedding ceremony, you will sign and get to keep, what is known as a 'Form 15 Marriage Certificate' - which looks like this:

After the ceremony, your celebrant will register the marriage with the Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages in the state your wedding took place in.

The Form 15 Certificate and registration of your marriage are included in my costs as your celebrant.

REGISTRY MARRIAGE CERTIFICATES

For one reason or another, you may need, or want, to apply for a Marriage Certificate from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

A Marriage Certificate is an official copy of the marriage registration held by the NSW Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages. It's often used to help establish a person's identity.

For a marriage that occurred in NSW, you can apply online, by post, or in person at a service

centre.

Certificates are sent to you by the Registry, using registered post. You can't get a certificate from a service centre.

Your standard ones look like this:

My fee does not include the cost of a Marriage Certificate from Births, Deaths and Marriages (which is currently $56, or they have a few pretty commemmorative ones for $81).

Some celebrants will offer to arrange this certificate for you - for an extra fee!

I don't see the point when you can save some money and do it yourself online!

After your ceremony, I will send you a follow up email with a link to apply for your Official Marriage Certificate - if you require it.

You wapply for this certificate through the Reigistry of Births Deaths and Marriages and produce three forms of ID.

Visit the BDM website for information on applying for your Marriage Certificate.




Changing your name after marriage


Your Surname will not automatically change when you get married. If you were married in Australia a formal Change of Name is not required if you wish to take your spouse's name. Usually personal documentation, such as your driver's licence and passport, can be changed to your married surname when you provide a Standard Marriage Certificate. (See: Applying for your Marriage Certificate with the Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages)




How can I provide feedback?


As the wedding industry is based mostly on word of mouth, to help other couples, I encourage you to leave a review of Becky Married Me on Facebook or Google!

If you're really generous, feel free to send me through some of your wedding photos to hello@beckymarriedme.com.

- I would absolutely love to feature them!

I welcome feedback from clients, guests and passers by!

If you're a client who has a formal complaint about the service you have recieved from me, or another registered marriage celebrant, visit the Marriage section of the Attorney General's Department website or call 1800 550 343.




Are there any other wedding suppliers you reccomend?


Shoot me a message asking me what type of suppliers you are after, what type of vibe you want and an idea of your budget.

I have worked with lots of other wedding vendors and can always reccomend one with a great reputation to suit your needs!
If you like the look of any of the photos on this site - I can let you know who the photographer was for that photo and get you in touch with them.




How did you create your website?


If you're a celebrant without a website, would like to become a celebrant, or, are any type of small business owner - you may like to know the answer to the above question: I created this website using Wix. Wix allows you to easily build your own website and your subscription also incluses a domain name and web hosting (you won't need anything else!). Click here to get started creating your own Wix website