1. What you need to know before you get started
- You must be over 16 years old, not be married already, and not closely related to your partner by birth, marriage or adoption
- Same sex couples can be legally married in New Zealand – YAY!
- If you’ve been married before, you will need to provide the date that your previous marriage ended. This is the date on the divorce or death certificate
- Your marriage licence is only valid for 3 months – so don’t rush into this too early
- Allow at least three working days for the local NZ Registry Office/Court House to process your marriage licence application
- Your New Zealand Marriage Licence costs $150 for a wedding with a New Zealand registered celebrant
2. Download your notice of intended marriage form online
CLICK HERE to find the correct “Notice of Intended Marriage” form for you.
There is one form for couples who live in New Zealand or arrive in New Zealand at least 3 working days prior to the wedding date.
There is another form for couples who will arrive in New Zealand less than three working days prior to the wedding date.
3. Completing your notice of intended marriage form
You can complete the form on screen up until the “Statutory declaration” part.
Check all the details of your Notice of Intended Marriage over with your wedding celebrant.
4. submitting your notice of intended marriage form
OPTION 1 – SUBMITTING VIA EMAIL
(only available if you can collect your documents in NZ at least one working day prior to your wedding day)
At least 3 working days prior to your wedding date, email your Notice to the local Court House/Registry Office and advise them when you will attend in person. Wait at least 3 working days from submission via email before attending in person. When there in person the staff will assist you in completing the statutory declaration and making payment. You can also collect your marriage documents at the same time – easy!
OPTION 2 – SUBMITTING IN PERSON
(only available if you are in NZ at least three working days prior to your wedding day)
Print your Notice and take it, with payment, to the local Court House/Registry Office at least 3 working days prior to your wedding date. The staff there will take you through the statutory declaration, process your payment, and advise you when your marriage documents will be ready to pick up. Documents will be ready no less than 3 working days on from date of submission.
OPTION 3 – LATE ARRIVAL TO NEW ZEALAND
(If you are not in New Zealand at least one working day prior to your wedding date)
Print your Notice and take it to a Commonwealth Representative in your country of residence. Find a Commonwealth Representative at the closest New Zealand Embassy to you HERE and be sure to take both of your passports with you to your appointment. You then complete the statutory declaration with the Commonwealth Representative and they will sign your Notice.
Now email your Notice with payment to the local Registry Office/Court House in New Zealand, at least 3 working days prior to your wedding date. In your email, nominate your celebrant (by name) to collect your marriage documents on your behalf. Don’t forget to let your celebrant know.
OTHER USEFUL INFO:
- In any case, the statutory declaration must be completed by one of the parties of marriage (you or your partner)
- Queenstown District Court email: email@example.com
- Find a list of NZ Registry Offices and check their opening hours HERE
5. Collect your NZ marriage licence
- Whoever completes the statutory declaration must also pick up the New Zealand Marriage Licence. If you are unable to collect your marriage licence, talk to your celebrant about collecting it for you, before you submit your notice.
- You should receive the following:
- 2 x Copy of Particulars of Marriage
- New Zealand Marriage Licence
- Information on how to apply for your New Zealand Marriage Certificate
- On all documents please check for any incorrect details or spelling errors and notify the Court House/Registry Office staff immediately. Any errors can be amended straight away
- I always recommend that couples hand their New Zealand Marriage Licence and paperwork to their wedding celebrant prior to the ceremony. It’s helpful for your celebrant to look over the documents prior to the big day and gives you one less thing to have to remember or worry about.