Things to ask when choosing a celebrant:
When should I book a celebrant?
I have bookings 2 years away, so the earlier the better, especially for the busy wedding season, October to April. Enquiries for 2021 are starting to come in.
How many ceremonies do they conduct per year?
I conduct over 100 amazing weddings a year, whilst 55% of celebrants do less than 9 a year and 75% do less than 20, but don't worry, I never do more than 2 in a day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon and I always try to have them in the same area. Being a professional celebrant makes an enormous difference to not just the quality of service I offer but also your wedding day.
Are they full time or part time?
Unlike most celebrants, I am a full time professional celebrant, this is all I do, ensuring you have a great wedding. This is not a part-time hobby for me and I believe it reflects in the quality of service I provide as well as making sure we all have fun in the planning and building of your wedding ceremony. I am available to see you in the daytime, evenings and weekends and I base our meetings around your schedules.
Do they meet you at your place or only theirs?
My Diamond Ceremony package includes all meetings at your home and also the rehearsal at your venue, or my office is also available.
Do you do a rehearsal?
I always offer a rehearsal at the venue. A rehearsal is fantastic as it takes the stress away. Please allow 45-60 minutes for a great rehearsal. It helps you and the bridal party to enjoy themselves on the wedding day without stressing about where to stand and what to do.
Do you supply a PA system?
Yes, wireless mics included and no power required so parks, gardens and beach weddings are a speciality. I will play the music that you would like for the ceremony.
Do you allow meetings after the initial meeting or just emails and phone calls?
Yes, there is no limit to the number of times we can meet. Face to face meetings help us both to get to know each other.
Do you show me templates of a ceremony for me to choose or do you build them individually?
I always build ceremonies individually for each couple. At the introductory meeting I take you through the ceremony guidebook I have developed, it is over 100 pages long and helps you in the development of your own ceremony.
Are you friendly, easy going and are there to help us?
ABSOULTELY!!! I love being a celebrant and my passion for the role ensures that my goal is to make you happy and see the bride with that tear in her eye as she walks up the aisle on her special day, and I have even had a groom shed a tear as he walked down the aisle to his partner. Have a read of the testimonials to hear what other couples think of me and the ceremony.
Information regarding your wedding, legal work etc.
Legal Requirements & the Notice of Intended Marriage form
There is a legal requirement under the Marriage Act that at least one month notice and no longer than 18 months is given for you to be married. The form to use is the Notice of Intended Marriage (NOIM) and you can download the form here. The form must reach your celebrant no later than one month before the wedding. If you need to apply for your marriage to be conducted within this timeframe please telephone me urgently as we must make application to the Registrar of Births Deaths and Marriages and seek permission to conduct the wedding. I have successfully obtained permission many times and can assist you to conduct the ceremony if less than one months notice is required.
Documents required to complete the NOIM
If you were born in Australia you must supply either your birth certificate, an extract of birth or a passport. If you were born overseas an overseas birth certificate, translated in English or an overseas passport can be used. If you need documents translated they can be done here. If you have been married previously you will also be required to supply evidence of how the previous marriage ended i.e. divorce/death.
You each require a witness to the ceremony to sign the legal paperwork. They need to able to understand English and be over the age of 18. I can supply witnesses if you are having a small wedding, (extra cost).
If your fiancé is based overseas and you require the “Letter for Immigration”, please contact me so I can explain the requirements to ensure that your fiancé and any overseas guests have the correct documentation to apply for their visas. Please click on the link for the NOIM and complete page one. I can answer any questions you have regarding the wedding process when the Immigration Department is involved.
Permits for conducting a wedding in a park
There are many parks and beaches where you do not need a permit to hold a small wedding. If you are having rows of chairs, red carpet etc then generally you will always require a permit. Please contact me to discuss the requirements.
How do I pay?
A non refundable payment of $200 is paid within the first 14 days of a wedding being booked. This covers the cost of the legal work being prepared. The second payment is due after the first draft of the ceremony is written OR three months before the wedding with the final payment one month before the wedding.
How long should the ceremony go for?
Generally ceremonies go for 25-30 minutes, depending on your wishes. In total, from my early arrival to pack up, I will be at the venue for around 2 hours. You need to bear in mind if it is an outdoor location, the time of year, for summer heat or winter rains will have a major bearing on your planning.
Can a religious component be included in the ceremony even if the ceremony is not held in a church?
Of course, this is one of the beauties of a civil ceremony, you can tailor it to your needs, and you can have as much or as little religious component as you wish. Remember there will no religious component if you do not want any.