How to Shorten Time for Wedding
4.1.4 CIRCUMSTANCES FOR AUTHORISING MARRIAGE WHERE NOIM IS LODGED WITH LESS THAN THE REQUIRED NOTICE TIME – ‘SHORTENING OF TIME’
In many cases there will be a legitimate reason for this and so it is provided for in the Marriage Act 1961 and the Marriage Regulations 1963.It should be noted that shortening is only granted in extraordinary circumstances, and only for the circumstances provided for in Schedule 1B of the Marriage Regulations 1963 (Cth).
WHEN CAN A PRESCRIBED AUTHORITY CONSIDER A SHORTENING OF TIME REQUEST?
The five circumstances in which an application for shortening of time may be considered by a prescribed authority are set out in Schedule 1B to the Marriage Regulations 1963 (Cth).
These are limited to:
employment related or other travel commitments
wedding or celebration arrangements, or religious considerations
legal proceedings, or
an error in giving notice.
WHAT SHOULD AN AUTHORISED CELEBRANT DO IF A COUPLE WANTS THEIR MARRIAGE SOLEMNISED LESS THAN ONE MONTH AFTER THE CELEBRANT RECEIVES THE NOIM?
If the parties to an intended marriage have not provided the NOIM to the authorised celebrant with the minimum one month’s notice, they will need to apply to a prescribed authority for authorisation before the celebrant can make or confirm any arrangements to marry them.
Where an authorised celebrant is asked to reduce the minimum notice period for the NOIM, the celebrant should see that the NOIM is in order and then refer the party or parties with the notice to a prescribed authority.
The authorised celebrant should explain the following key points to the couple:
the reason for seeking a shortening of time must fall within one of the categories described above before the application can be considered
a prescribed authority has no discretion to grant a shortening of time outside the circumstances covered by these categories, and
the granting of a shortening of time is not automatic.
The authorised celebrant should also advise the parties to the marriage to make an appointment with the prescribed authority and to take the completed NOIM and any other documentary evidence to prove why they require a shortening of time (for example, medical certificates or a travel itinerary).