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Marrying in Bali, what are the Legal Implications

Many Australian couples believe it or not, will pack their bags and head off to some exotic destination for their wedding. Bali is the ideal destination because it offers so much for couples. But, before you jet off and tie the knot there are some important facts you need to know and should be aware of. Travelling overseas to get married is an awesome idea but you MUST make sure that you also comply with local Australian laws – this way you are legally married when you arrive back here in Australia.

Getting Legally Married in Bali.

Contact the Australian Embassy to find out the exact ramifications of getting married in say Bali as an example. Then, see if you will be getting married by a celebrant or religious leader and find out what paper work you will be getting and if it is valid in Australia. If you are still in doubt get in touch with the team here at YOUR BALI WEDDING and we will clearly explain to you the processes of getting married in Bali and the legal implications back home.

Saying that it is possible to get legally married in Bali. It is also possible and this is something that you need to be aware of, that you can get married in Bali without the legal implications being enforced back home in Australia. That is you can have your Balinese wedding but it won’t mean anything in Australia unless you do the paperwork back home. So in reality Bali is the fun part of the whole experience; the ceremony, the after party, the honeymoon, having the guests all fly over and perhaps stay in a private Villa, but the boring part happens in Oz.

These types of Bali weddings are usually conducted by a local celebrant that can be organised by your wedding planner. These celebrants are generally non denominational, so if you are after something that is specific to your religious faith then I suggest you speak with your planner to organise this well beforehand.

If you do not want to have a celebrant but prefer a friend or relative to conduct the ceremony that’s fine as well. Around 25-35% of couples go down this path. Remember that the essential legally binding paper work must be done in Australia if the marriage is to be legally binding.

A Balinese Traditional Wedding Ceremony

To add a small amount of confusion to the mix you can also get legally married in Bali but you should check with the Australian consulate as stated above what is legally binding back in Australia.

The thing is that you must comply with Indonesian laws if the marriage is to be considered legal – we cannot give advice about this so I STRONGLY URGE and recommend that you seek your own legal advice about this. Getting married in Bali, Indonesia is exotic, romantic and unique but what sticks in Indonesia may not necessarily hold here in Aust legally.

Ok, let me elaborate on this point a bit further. To become husband and wife legally in Indonesia, you have to have both a religious and civil ceremony, which are generally done at the same time. Again, this is to comply with Indonesian laws and may not comply locally – so do your due diligence before you do anything.

Some interesting facts you should be aware of when getting legally married in Indonesia:


  • both couples have to be of the same religion. If one is say Christian and the other is Hindu, this does mean that the other has to convert BUT they have to verbally say they are of the same belief and religion. A mere formality BUT it is something that you should know before you go down this path.
  • Indonesia recognises most main religions including; Catholic, Hindu, Buddhism, Islam and most Christian based faiths.
  • The great thing about having your wedding ion Bali is that is can be done almost anywhere: beach wedding, in your villa, on a scenic cliff top or at a fancy restaurant – the whole thing and beauty about getting married in Bali is that it’s completely different to what you are used to, so take advantage of this and enjoy yourself. This however does exclude couples of the Catholic faith that MUST get married in a church.
  • You must obtain a certificate called the ‘Notice of Intention to Marry’ as well as a ‘ Certificate of non- Impediment’. Make sure you speak with Cyra our head wedding planner here at Your Bali Wedding for these details on how to get these and what to do. Or leave it to us and we will organise this for you. Make sure you have handy all birth certificates, legal documents confirming your individual status (single, divorced, widow) and a copy of all Indonesian visas.

If all this sounds confusing and a bit daunting please don’t stress out and forget about your dream of having a wedding in Bali – this is what we are here for and we can make all the paper work and inevitable hassles disappear. This is what we are known for and what we do best and this is why so many Australian couples turn to us when they are thinking about getting married in Bali – we look after everything: Villa accommodation for you and your guests, legalities as well as the whole wedding ceremony and party.

Just leave everything to us and all you have to think about is the good times ahead!

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