1. IS A NEW ZEALAND MARRIAGE LEGAL IN MY HOME COUNTRY?
Mostly, yes. Weddings performed in New Zealand are recognised by Australian and UK governments without need for further authentication. For some countries (including the U.S.) you may need to further verify your marriage documents for your marriage to be recognised by your home country.
2. WHO CAN GET MARRIED IN NEW ZEALAND?
Anyone who is not already married or in a civil union and any couples who are not closely related by birth, marriage or adoption can be married in New Zealand. Both different sex and same sex couples can be legally married in New Zealand.
3. WHERE CAN I GET MARRIED IN NEW ZEALAND?
4. CAN I HAVE A NON-RELIGIOUS WEDDING IN NEW ZEALAND?
Absolutely!! The legal elements of a New Zealand wedding ceremony have no religious language or connection.
5. WHAT DO I NEED TO GET MARRIED IN NEW ZEALAND?
6. HOW DO I GET A NEW ZEALAND MARRIAGE LICENCE?
See, “How to get my New Zealand Marriage Licence in 5 Simple Steps” for full details.
Also see, “Notice of Intended Marriage New Zealand – Frequently Asked Questions, Answered by a Marriage Celebrant” for extra help.
7. WHAT IF I’VE BEEN MARRIED BEFORE?
On your Notice of Intended Marriage form there is a space for you to state how your previous marriage ended and the date it ended. You are not required to provide any evidence as when you sign the “statutory declaration” you are signing to say that all the information you have provided is true.
8. WHO CAN BE A WITNESS AT OUR NEW ZEALAND WEDDING?
Anyone can be a witness to your wedding as long as they are able to understand the legal document that they are signing. Family, friends and strangers can all be witnesses! Witnesses must be present during the ceremony and they will sign your wedding documents afterwards. The names of your wedding witnesses are not printed on your official Marriage Certificate.
9. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET MY NEW ZEALAND MARRIAGE LICENCE?
The Registry Office must hold your application for at least 3 working days before granting your licence. Consider any public holidays which may effect Registry Office opening hours and delay this process. I recommend applying for your marriage licence at least a month before your wedding date when possible.
10. HOW LONG IS MY NEW ZEALAND MARRIAGE LICENCE VALID FOR?
Three months from the date issued.
11. HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO GET MARRIED IN NEW ZEALAND?
Your New Zealand marriage licence costs $150 to be married by an NZ registered celebrant in a ceremony location of your choice. Payment can be made when applying for your marriage licence online. See “How to Get Your NZ Marriage Licence in 5 Simple Steps” for more details. Celebrants also charge a fee for their services.
12. HOW DO I GET A COPY OF OUR MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE?
You can pre-order a copy (or multiple copies) of your marriage certificate as part of the online application for your marriage licence. Or you can call NZ Internal Affairs and order over the phone two weeks after your wedding.
13. HOW LONG WILL MY WEDDING CEREMONY BE?
Anywhere between 10 and 30 minutes, depending on what you choose to include in your wedding ceremony (e.g. vows, readings, bridal party, music, etc). For an elopement style wedding or heli-wedding your ceremony will usually be 10-15 minutes. For a larger wedding with a bridal party your ceremony will usually be 15 – 25 minutes – but allow 30 minutes in your timeline so that you don’t feel rushed on the day.