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Complaint against a marriage celebrant

​This is the official site of the Australian Government Marriage Celebrants Programme. Anything you read elsewhere that is inconsistent with this site is not accurate.

If you want to make a complaint about a minister of religion for a recognised denomination, you will need to write to the registry of births, deaths and marriages in your state or territory.

If you want to make a complaint about a Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrant, you should consider:

  • whether you can settle the matter directly with the celebrant
  • that we do not have the power to make a celebrant refund money
  • that your complaint may be refused if it is not made within three months of the event. You can email us at marriagecelebrantssection@ag.gov.au to request more time.

The following people or organisations can all make a complaint:

  • a party to a marriage (or a proposed marriage)
  • a member of the public
  • registries of births, deaths and marriages
  • government departments.

Further information is detailed in the following fact sheet:

Complaint process

To make a complaint about a Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrant, please complete and submit the following form:

Alternatively, you may submit a complaint using our online enquiry form available from the Marriage page.

If you require assistance with preparing your complaint, email us at marriagecelebrantssection@ag.gov.au or contact us by phone.

We will make a preliminary assessment of your complaint and send it to you and the celebrant. You will both be given an opportunity to comment.

The comments may include any additional information, including photographs or signed witness statements. We will consider comments provided by you and the celebrant before making a final determination.

You and the celebrant will be advised of the outcome, which may include imposing a disciplinary measure, or taking no action. Information we hold about your complaint may be subject to a freedom of information request. This means information you provide to us may be released to the public. More information is available on the Freedom of information page.

Privacy

The Marriage Law and Celebrants Section (MLCS) collects, uses, discloses and stores your personal information in accordance with our obligations under the Privacy Act 1988. Information about how we use your personal information in a complaint process is contained in the complaint form.

Our section handles personal information in accordance with the Attorney-General's Department privacy policy. If you wish to access or seek correction of your personal information or make an enquiry or complaint about your privacy, you may contact the departmental Privacy Contact Officer on 02 6141 2660 or email privacy@ag.gov.au.