What if Someone Objects?
(05/01/2019) | Categories:
| Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
all seen it in movie after movie - If anyone
knows any reason why these two should not be
joined in marriage, speak now ....
So it is no surprise that it is a question that I'm
often asked when meeting with couples to talk about
their marriage ceremony. Teasers about the 2019
season of Married at First Sight includes
the question, and someone putting their hand up to
make an objection.
It might make interesting television, but there is
absolutely no need to worry about this if you're
being married by a civil celebrant in Australia. There
is no legal requirement to ask any such question.
And I definitely don't.
All that is legally required is that the marrying
couple makes a declaration that each is free to
marry. This declaration has the catchy title Declaration
of No Legal Impediment to Marriage, and needs
to be made in the presence of the officiating
celebrant fairly close to the wedding date.
Unlike the movie version (which is included in many
religious ceremonies), the Declaration
of No Legal Impediment to Marriage is
specific, and each party has to declare that the
various circumstances that would make it
unlawful for them to marry do not exist:
- neither of them is married to any other person
- they are not closely related, by blood or adoption
- they are both at least 18 years old,
- and there is no other circumstance that would be a
legal impediment to the marriage - which basically
translates to no fraud, they are each entering into
the marriage of their own free will, and they both
understand what marriage means.
happens if the question is asked and
someone does object?
an objection about the legality of the marriage is an
issue. If someone objects on any other grounds, such
as the couple have only just met, as per Married
at First Sight, it would be disruptive, would
ruin the romance of the moment, but would not require
any action to halt the ceremony. Worst case scenario,
however, is that the grounds for the objection would
raise questions about whether the marriage would be
legal and therefore the ceremony would have to be
stopped and could not go ahead until the facts of the
matter were clarified, which might require a legal
opinion or a determination by the Family Court.