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Ongoing professional development

OPD requirements

As a Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrant, you must complete five hours of ongoing professional development (OPD) activities each calendar year. This includes compulsory and elective activities.

Disciplinary measures may be imposed if you fail to complete these requirements.

On 8 August 2017, the department published its position paper on the future of ongoing professional development. Celebrants were informed directly by email at the same time. The position paper on OPD is available below:

The list of approved OPD activities for 2018 is available to download below:

From 1 January 2018, the four registered training organisations approved by the department to provide these activities are:

You should contact them directly for information. There are face-to-face and distance education options.

More information about OPD is also available in the following fact sheet:

Celebrant association conferences

Only association conferences that are listed on the department's website can count towards your elective ongoing professional development requirements. The celebrant association conferences that have been approved for 2018 are listed below. This list will be updated throughout the year as further conferences are approved:

The list of celebrant association contact details can be found on the Marriage celebrant associations and networks page.

Celebrant associations can apply to have their association conferences in 2018 count towards elective ongoing professional development requirements for Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrants.

Associations wishing to apply for this should use the following form:

Seeking an exemption from OPD requirements

To seek an exemption from OPD requirements you must meet the criteria outlined in the guidelines below.

Eligible celebrants can access an exemption application form in the self-service portal. Exemptions can only be considered where they are accompanied by the fee and made by 31 December in the relevant year.

Declaration – RTOs with Certificate IV in Celebrancy unit as OPD

From 1 January 2018, celebrants will be able to choose to complete units from registered training organisations (RTO) with a Certificate IV in Celebrancy so that units count as OPD. The units can be undertaken with any RTO with the Certificate IV in Celebrancy (including one of the four providers listed above).

RTOs will be able to deliver any of the 37 elective units from the Certificate IV in Celebrancy listed on training.gov.au to Commonwealth registered marriage celebrants. RTOs do not need to be on the panel approved by the Attorney-General's Department to apply, but they will need to meet some conditions.

RTO declaration

RTOs who wish to provide the Certificate IV in Celebrancy units to count as OPD are required to sign a declaration. It is a formal undertaking to report the completion of any of the recognised units from the Certificate IV in Celebrancy so it can be counted towards a celebrant's ongoing professional development.