Things almost everyone gets wrong on their NOIM

When I’m marrying couples I need the paperwork to be spot-on. It just saves messaging back and forth between myself, the couple, and the births, deaths, and marriages department.

To be married in Australia, you need to have a certain form to your celebrant before one month before your marriage ceremony, and so many people get it wrong. So I want to help. From here on in we’ll call the “Notice of Intended Marriage form” the NOIM.

  1. The “To:” section is where you write your celebrant’s full name and address, they’ll normally advise you of that. Mine is Joshua Withers, 52 Prospect Street, Fortitude Valley, Qld, 4006.
  2. Your names: as they appear on your passport or birth certificate or drivers license, no other way.
  3. Your occupation: it has to be an occupation someone does, so “Manager” instead of “Management”, or “Administration Assistant” instead of “Admin”
  4. Address: your current residential address. Don’t worry if it’s going to change soon, it has to be your current actual residential address.
  5. Conjugal status: You’ve only got three possible answers here: you’ve either been “never validly married” or you have been validly married, and that’s ended, so now you’re “divorced” or “widower” or “widow”
  6. Birthplace: Most people that think they were born in Sydney or Melbourne or Perth weren’t. They were born in South Brisbane, or Cremorne, or East Melbourne. It has to be the birthplace on your birth certificate or passport.
  7. Parents names: for dad it has to be his full current legal name as he’s known on his ID, including middle names. Mum, it’s her full maiden name. Maiden name isn’t only her last name, it’s the full deal, first, middle, last name as she was known when she was a little girl.
  8. Previous marriages, just answer the questions asked but the big mistake people make is in the date the last marriage ended. This has to be taken from the paperwork, and most divorce certificates will say something around the lines of “issued on the first day of January 2012” but then further on there’s a line about it becoming final usually a month later. We need the final date, not the date the judge hit the mallet.
  9. On the back of the NOIM some signatures are needed. Only sign in front of a valid witness, and the easiest and best witnesses to get are a marriage celebrant or a JP. The other witnesses are listed below, but some people won’t want to, and some people confuse this list  with the stat-dec list of witnesses, which is different again.

The rest of the form is to be filled out by your celebrant.

Hot tip: they’ll need to sight your original proof of birth and proof of ID. The best way to tackle that request is to bring your Passport. If you can’t, bring your birth certificate and drivers license, originals only. If you don’t have those, chat to your celebrant. If you’ve been married before they’ll also need to see proof of that marriage ending.

And if you need to know how the NOIM works in more detail, click here!