Making it official in NZ!

How do you get legally married in New Zealand?

So, it is official, you want to marry in the land of the long white cloud, let’s face it—who doesn’t. New Zealand is so picturesque and your photos will be magnificent. To marry in New Zealand is a relatively easy process; however, there are a few things you want to be aware of.  

Marriage License

Regardless of if you live in New Zealand or overseas, you must apply for a marriage license, this can be done up to three months prior to the ceremony. You must find a venue and put the location of the venue on the marriage license. If you have a backup venue, you must also list that on the marriage license as you can only get married at the location specified on the license.  If your plans change, for example the weather has grounded your helicopter plans and you end up getting married lakeside. The celebrant will put a foot note with their copy of the license when they send it away with the registrar. The same thing applies if your celebrant changes at the last minute due to sickness.

Fill in a Notice of Intended Marriage form

If you reside outside of New Zealand, you must fill in a NOIM prior to your wedding. The form can be found here.

You can complete the Notice of Intended Marriage form when you arrive in New Zealand, this can only be done after the three days of residency. Alternatively, you can mail it from overseas along with an international bank draft in New Zealand dollars. This fee is paid to the registry office.

How do we apply for a marriage license?

  • You apply via the link below. The cost $150, if you use a marriage celebrant and$240, if you get married at the registry office.
  • The license confirms that it is legal for you to marry on your chosen day, at your chosen venue.
  • The marriage license lasts for 3 months and must be done at least 3 days prior to the wedding.
  • If you use an independent celebrant, they have their own fees associated with their services.
  • Only one of the parties needs to apply for the license, but both of your details must be listed on the license.

What are the required Documents for a marriage to take place?

  • Notice of Intended Marriage form
  • Statutory Declaration signed in the presence of a Registrar of Marriages
  • Parental consent if either party is under 17 years of age.
  • Valid passport

What do we have to do prior to the wedding?

It is important to note that you must visit the Registrar to sign the Statutory Declaration prior to the wedding. On this from you are declaring that both you and your partner are free to marry and that all of the information you have previously supplies is correct.

How do we book to visit the registrar?

If you live in Auckland, Manukau, Wellington or Christchurch, you can simply book online.

Remind me of the time frame?

Your marriage license takes three days to be issued.

If I am using an independent celebrant what do I need to know and what do I need to give them?

You must give your chosen celebrant the marriage license, and two copies of the Copy of Particulars.

Only registered celebrants can marry people in New Zealand, please double check your chosen celebrant is registered.

Can weddings occur virtually in New Zealand?

No, weddings are not yet able to happen online.

Can I apply for a license if I am not currently in New Zealand?

Yes, anyone can apply for a license and this can be done from anywhere in the world, you do not have to be residing in New Zealand to apply for a license.

Is there a residency requirement, if you want to legally marry in New Zealand?

Yes, you are required to stay for three days.

Are same-sex marriages legal in New Zealand?


Who cannot legally be married in NewZealand?

You cannot legally marry if you’re:

  • already married or in a civil union, unless you’re changing your relationship with the same person
  • closely related by birth, marriage or adoption
  • under 16.

I’m 16, can I get legally married?

You will need to get consent granted from a Family Court Judge before you can marry.

Get consent to marry if you’re aged16 or 17

If you are granted consent to be married, you’ll be given a Court Order. You will need to attach the Court Order to your marriage license application form and post it to Births, Deaths and Marriages.

What happens if I am using a marriage celebrant?

You will be sent the marriage license as well as two copies of the “Copy of Particulars ofMarriage.” This form outlines the parties of the marriage’s details as well as the location of the wedding. You are then required to forward these documents to your chosen celebrant prior to your wedding. Please remember that picking your celebrant is so important, as they set the tone for the day. Take the time to connect with a few celebrants via Zoom. It is super important that you find the right fit for you. Do not leave your hunting for a celebrant to the last minute as the good ones go quickly.

Where can I find a registered celebrant and what are their fees?

Registered celebrants are the only people who can perform civil unions and weddings in NewZealand.

You can find the list of registered celebrants here.

My wedding has already occurred, how do I apply for a marriage certificate?

You can order your Marriage Certificate by phone:

Phone number within New Zealand is: – 0800 225 252

FromOverseas; – (+64) 4 463 9362.

Payment is accepted over the phone by credit or debit card.

Your certificate will be issued by mail or by email after about 8 working days.

Costs for a marriage certificate is: $33 New Zealand dollars

Happy Planning.

Information for this article has been found here:,ceremony%20costs%20%24240%20in%20total.