Section 112 of the Marriage Act 1961 in relation to interpreters at marriage ceremonies states that where the person by whom or in whose presence a marriage is to be solemnized considers that it is desirable to do so, the person may use the services of an interpreter, not being a party to the marriage, in or in connection with the ceremony.
I will need to receive a statutory declaration by the interpreter stating that the interpreter understands, and is able to converse in, the languages in respect of which he or she is to act as interpreter.
If a party to an intended marriage produces a document as evidence of their identity, date and place of birth, or the legal end of their previous marriage that is written in a language other than English, as your celebrant, I should ask you to seek an official translation of the document.
In Australia, the national standards and accreditation body for translators and interpreters is the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters Ltd (NAATI). The NAATI website provides a searchable online directory of translators and interpreters. If the services of a translator or interpreter are required, the Attorney-General’s Department recommends that they are found through the NAATI website and that the translator or interpreter is accredited at Level 3 or higher.
The Marriage Act and Regulations do not require translations to be provided by an accredited translator, except where a person consenting to a minor’s marriage gives a consent that is not in English. That said, as your marriage celebrant, I should not solemnise the marriage if I am not satisfied with the evidence provided by each of you.
Marriage documents form part of a chain of documents you will use over the course of your life to establish your identity and obtain identity documents. Obtaining an accredited translation will provide an audit trail of amendments to your record, preserving your name in full (especially where documents contain nonalphabetic characters). Additionally, section 50(4) of the Marriage Act requires me to forward the official certificate of marriage and the NOIM (together with supporting
documents) to the registry of births, deaths and marriages in the state or territory in which your marriage was solemnised. These supporting documents may include official translations of documents.
The interpreter will need to provide me with a document on the prescribed form, signed by that interpreter, of the faithful performance of the interpreter’s services as interpreter.
Should you require the services of an interpreter, please check this chart below, or contact me as I have several more options on my Services Database.
National Relay Service
Supports people who are deaf, hearing impaired, or who have speech loss to use telephone services
Ph: 1800 555 660
University of Queensland
Document and Certificate translations
Brisbane St, Lucia, Queensland 4072
Ph: 07 3346 8270
Migrant Resource Centre
Individual help for new migrants
28 Dibley St, Woolloongabba QLD 4102
Ph: 07 3337 5400