Introduction of Celebrant Registration Fees

Recent changes to the Marriage Act will see celebrants paying more to perform their role. The introduction of an annual registration fee of $240 from 1 July 2014 is designed to set the Marriage Celebrants Section of the Attorney General's department on a 'cost recovery' footing.  Further to this, aspiring celebrants will pay $600 to have their application assessed, regardless of whether they are successful or otherwise.

You are probably asking what this means to you, the marrying public.  Certainly there is a suggestion that celebrants will pass on this additional cost to their clients.  If you perform ten weddings per annum, this would effectively add $24 to the cost of each ceremony.  For celebrants like myself, who perform 50 or more weddings annually, I predict there is likely to be little if any change to their fee.  Time will tell.

Newly appointed celebrants will have a large outlet, with this fee added to all the other costs of setting up business (computers, software, sound equipment and advertising to name just four of the major costs).

You might like to ask your celebrant whether you are bearing the cost of this change OR whether maybe they are absorbing it as just another business expense? Alternatively, should you lock in your celebrant before this fee is introduced, as there may be a 'window of opportunity' to get the 'pre-price rise' quote locked in?