The Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act comes in to force on Monday 19 August 2013. It will allow couples to marry, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, from that date.
Before marrying, a Notice of Intended Marriage must be completed in person at a Births, Deaths and Marriages office and a marriage licence obtained, at least three days before the intended marriage. Same sex couples intending to marry will be able to file the Notice from 16 August, with the marriage licence issued on 19 August.
Couples who have previously entered into a civil union may choose to change the form of their relationship to a marriage from 19 August. The Department of Internal Affairs will require a Change of Relationship form to be completed and evidence of the current civil union provided before doing so.
Civil unions and marriages will still be administered under different Acts. Civil union celebrants will not automatically become marriage celebrants. A celebrant may still be authorised to conduct only marriages or civil unions.