• Limits apply to weddings and funerals:
    • Weddings must not have more than 150 guests, subject to the 4 square metre rule. This applies to outdoor weddings and weddings on residential properties, and weddings in places of public worship.
    • Funerals, memorial services and wakes services must not have more than 100 persons, subject to the 4 square metre rule.
  • Cultural and sporting events at outdoor venues with a maximum capacity of 40,000 will be allowed up to 25% of their normal capacity. Events must be ticketed and seated and follow strict guidelines.

For more information, please see What you can and can't do under the rules.

The Minister for Health or a delegate may grant an exemption to this Order or specified provisions of this Order. Due to the ongoing public health risk of COVID-19, exemptions must be carefully considered on a case-by-case basis.

Exemptions for weddings and funerals

Exemptions are only considered where there are exceptional circumstances to justify the exemption.

It is important to allow sufficient time for the application to be considered. Ideally applications should be made at least 48 hours prior to the service, although NSW Health acknowledges that there may be situations where this is not possible. NSW Health must consider the risk from COVID-19 that is likely to exist at the time of the service. NSW Health will not grant exemptions for service dates more than 2 weeks ahead.

In addition, exemptions will only be made when the applicant demonstrates an understanding of how public health risks will be controlled.

The person conducting the service should contact us​ if they have not heard back regarding their request for an exemption 24 hours prior to the service.

Exemptions for other gatherings

The Public Health Order specifies limitations on the number of persons on certain premises and for certain activities. The Order lists premises and activities requiring a COVID-19 Safety Plan. Generally the number of people allowed on premises will be determined by the ‘one person per 4 square metre rule’.

People can participate in outdoor public gatherings of not more than 20 people. There is a 20 person limit on visitors to a home. Community sporting activities must not exceed 500 participants. For more information, please visit the NSW Government website.

Exemptions are only considered where there are exceptional circumstances. In addition, exemptions can only be made when the applicant demonstrates an understanding of how public health risks will be controlled, including that:

  • people can practice physical distancing by keeping a distance of 1.5 metres from other people
  • the maximum of one person per four-square metre rule can be followed
  • the directions relating to the number of persons allowed on premises can be followed.

Recording of contact information

The relevant person for a wedding, funeral or memorial service or religious service must record the names and contact details (including contact telephone numbers) of all people attending and conducting the service. For indoor spaces, the relevant person is the occupier of the premises. For outdoor spaces, the relevant person is the person conducting the service.

These records must be kept for at least 4 weeks, and provided to the Chief Health Officer, if requested.


For enquiries related to the Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order 2020: ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Page Updated: Thursday 27 August 2020
Contact page owner: Health Protection NSW