What paperwork will we receive on our wedding day?

On your wedding day, you’ll receive a beautiful “commemorative” marriage certificate with the Commonwealth coat of arms. It has my name plus both of your names (the bride’s maiden name) and space for 5 signatures (2 witnesses) plus the location and date of the wedding. This is often the certificate that your photographer will take photos of your signing.

This however is not your legal marriage certificate, purely a decorative one. Although this is not your legal certificate, you don’t want to lose it, so find a trusted friend or relative to take care of the certificate for you. I usually hand it to the wedding coordinator from the venue (if the ceremony and reception are taking place in the same place).

Your commemorative marriage certificate is evidence that you are married, however it is not enough evidence for you to change your name with the many departments that you need to do so. To obtain a copy of this certificate, you need to wait approximately 4 weeks for your marriage to be registered with Births, Deaths & Marriages and then apply for it. This can be done online by clicking here or in person at BDM (595 Collins Street, Melbourne). Just recently BDM have also made it possible for me to arrange to have a copy of your official marriage certificate posted to your place of residence. I can only do this when I lodge your paperwork – not after. So it’s something I’ll ask you when completing your paperwork. There is an additional $50 processing and express postage fee.