The must-have simplified guide for getting married in Ireland ..

Relax – The Advice You Need is All Here

If you are newly-engaged, celebrated your happy news and told family and friends, and you are wondering what to do next?  Don’t worry – with so many choices this is the obvious first question for so many modern couples in Ireland.

If you are getting married in Ireland and organising your own wedding, it can be done without any stress (other than making decisions LOL) if you follow these simple steps. It is essential that you know these few things, to ensure that everything is completed as necessary and in the correct and logical order.

1. First Things First

It’s very simple if you follow these steps:

  • Church or non-Church wedding?

If you will be married in a Church you will need to speak with your priest or pastor to book your wedding date, and to find out what you should do next.  Go to PART 3  below.

For a non-Church wedding, please go to PART 2 below:

2. Non-Church Wedding

If you would like a non-Church wedding – the next things to do are:

Choose Your Ceremony Type

Decide what type of ceremony you would like:

a) A Unique & Personalised Legal Marriage Ceremony

If you want the most flexibility with your ceremony design options, including ceremony wording and music, your best option is a marriage solemniser of your choice to create & conduct your unique & personalised fully legal marriage ceremony on any day of the week, at any wedding venue of your choice.  I am a registered solemniser, fully authorised to conduct unique & personalised ceremonies which are unique & completely personalised to suit your requirements.

If you would like a secular, non-religious, spiritual or mixed faith legal marriage ceremony unique & personalised to your requirements, please don’t hesitate to call me for a quick chat so I can answer any questions you might have about getting married in Ireland.

b) Civil Ceremony

There is a lot of public confusion in Ireland caused by the use of legal marriage terminology from other countries which has a completely different meaning here in Ireland.  In my homeland Australia, a civil marriage ceremony is a ceremony created & conducted according to the wishes and beliefs of the couple, instead of the rules of a Religion. Yes, according to the Australian meaning I can conduct a civil ceremony but only in Australia.

Here in Ireland a civil marriage ceremony has a completely different legal meaning. A civil marriage ceremony in Ireland is a non-religious registry office marriage and can only be conducted by a HSE Civil Registrar or other HSE Civil Registration Office staff.

As a HSE registered solemniser of marriages, I am not permitted to use the term “civil marriage ceremony”, “civil wedding ceremony” or “civil ceremony” when referring to marriage or wedding ceremonies. Any wedding celebrant in Ireland who advertises civil ceremonies is not registered to conduct legal marriages.

If you would like a unique & personalised non-denominational legal marriage ceremony of any style, including the Australian civil ceremony style, created & conducted according to your own wishes and beliefs, I would be honoured to work with you.

c) Non-Legal Wedding Ceremony

If you live overseas, you can have a non-legal wedding ceremony in Ireland if that’s what you want.  If you are living overseas and you found it necessary to be married in your country of residence and you don’t want your family & friends in Ireland to know that you are already married that’s OK too.  Your secret is safe with me!  The only requirement I have for a non-legal wedding ceremony in Ireland, is that you must be legally married before your non-legal wedding day.  This is not a legal requirement in Ireland (like it is in my homeland Australia) but is my own requirement based on my own high standard of integrity and ethics. 

 I believe that every couple has the right to a dignified celebration of their marriage as a married couple and I would never agree to conduct a non-legal ceremony unless the couple was already legally married.  Imagine all the fun and excitement of your wedding day celebrations, it would certainly be lost if you were not already married.

3. Lodge your Notification of Intention to Marry (NOIM)

Now that you have decided what type of ceremony you would like  –  for a non-Church or a Church wedding your next steps are:

  • Book your appointment to lodge your Notification of Intention to Marry with the HSE.  You can find out all the details for lodging  your NOIM here on the HSE website from the link below:
  • Choose your two witnesses over the age of 18 as you will be asked for their names and dates of birth at your NOIM appointment.  If you can’t yet decide who your witnesses will be, you can supply them to the HSE a later date, but that could mean another visit to the HSE office to pickup your Marriage Registration Form (MRF) and green folder.
    If you have all the necessary information to provide at your NOIM appointment, in many cases you will receive your MRF and green folder at the meeting, and avoid another visit to the HSE office to collect your MRF and green folder before your big day.
  • Attend your NOIM meeting on the date booked and remember to take with you any necessary ID documents and information requested.
  • Take out wedding insurance in the case of unforeseen events which might prevent your wedding proceeding on the date booked.

Once you have done the above you are ready to do the following (if you haven’t already) in no particular order:

  • Choose your bridal party ( if applicable, not all couples choose to have a bridal party )
  • Find and book each of your wedding suppliers who will provide you with all of the expert services you will need to create your big day exactly how you want it to be!

4. Wedding Suppliers

  • Wedding Rings/Jeweller
  • Photographer
  • Videographer
  • Wedding Cake
  • Dresses / Suits
  • Calligrapher
  • Band
  • Ceremony singer or musician(s)
  • Catering if applicable
  • Decor Hire/Decorator/Set Designer
  • Florist
  • Hairdresser
  • Makeup
  • Invitations
  • Novelty items for your guests eg. Photobooth, Candy Cart, Psychic Medium, Magician etc.

Once you have chosen and booked your wedding suppliers, create a contact list of their names along with their contact details and have it in a handy place at all times, so you can consult your suppliers at any time with necessary questions.

5. Hen / Stag Party

If you will be having hen and stag parties you can organise those at any time.  Have fun!

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