Legal support: Italy
Getting married in Italy is easier than ever before. Civil ceremonies in Italy last about 20 minutes, however, many civil wedding venues allow couples to stay a longer to take photographs. The Italian civil code and traditional vows are read out in Italian, in Alto Adige German is an option. They cannot be read by the celebrant in any other language, which means that if one or both of you do not speak Italian fluently then by Italian law an interpreter is a must.
The locations where couples can get married are restricted to buildings and structures that are managed or owned by the local town hall. These buildings are varied and spectacular, such as, palaces, villas and castles. If a couple wishes to have only a symbolic ceremony they can marry in a different location with the permission of the owner. Locations can be personalised with music and flowers, and other decorations creating that dream wedding setting.
In Italy when a woman gets married she does not take her husband’s name. She keeps her surname. This means that when the bride signs the Act of Marriage it must be done in her maiden name.
Two witnesses are required who need to be over 18.
In most situations the celebrant is a local council official or the mayor. It is possible in some wedding locations to choose the celebrant. This person has to be an Italian citizen and can not be related to either the bride or groom. If you have someone in mind to do the ceremony for you, let us know so we can organise the relevant documents and check with the town hall if that it is possible in your desired location.
You will receive a multi-lingual marriage certificate. This document will need to be registered when you return home. Back to top
The bureaucracy in Italy can be frustrating and confusing, even for Italians. Bestweddingaway has done all the research to make the process of organising your documents as hassle-free as possible. Please take a look at our checklist to ensure that your request to marry in Italy is within the boundaries of Italian law. This procedure is relevant to British citizens. If you are of a different nationality please contact us for further information.
√ Both bride and groom must be over 18.
√ Witnesses must be over 18. (If you are travelling alone we can provide you with 2 witnesses, let us know when you send your documents so we can also organise the witnesses’ documents.)
√ If women are divorced, then 300 days need to have passed (in Italy women cannot marry within 300 days of getting divorced).
√ All documents are produced within 6 months of the wedding date, if not they have expired and are no longer legal.
√ Your passports are valid for 6 months after the date of the wedding date.
√ An interpreter. (By law if the couple do not speak Italian there must be an interpreter, however this is included in our Best Wedding Kit).
Bestweddingaway has created a step-by-step guide which is available in our brochure. The guide includes the timeline for all the documents required by the Italian authorities. This timeline is also on our Web Project Planner to assist couples with the organisation of paperwork.
Below is a list of the documents and procedures that need to be followed to have a civil ceremony in Italy.
- Certificate of Non Impediment – Couples must go to their local registry office in Britain and publish the Banns. The registry office will release a Certificate of Non Impediment approximately 23 days thereafter.
- The original, long versions of birth certificates, including the names of both parents. This is applicable for both the bride and groom.
- Photocopies of both of your passports. Photocopies must be made of all pages with writing on them.
- Copies of the witnesses’ passports. Photocopies must be made of all pages with writing on them.
- If you are divorced – the original Divorce Decree Absolute and the original marriage certificate of your previous marriage.
- If you are widowed – the original Death Certificate and the original marriage certificate of your previous marriage.
- If either of you have changed your names then the original Deed Poll is required.
It may sound like a lot to put together but our bespoke Web Project Planner has been designed specifically to take the confusion out of planning your wedding in Italy. The deadlines indicated in the planner break everything into simple, manageable pieces. Your personal wedding planner will always be on hand for any questions that may arise. If you are confused or unsure of how to do anything please do not hesitate to contact us for advice or further information.
If you would like a copy of Bestweddingaway brochure or more information on specifics surrounding an Italian wedding ceremony, please complete the form on the Contacts page.