Requirements for your Wedding Ceremony in Italy
Civil Ceremonies: Foreign couples can have a civil ceremony in Italy which is legally recognised by their country of origin. The civil ceremony may be celebrated in all Italian City Halls also in some wedding venues with special authorisation. Foreign couples are not required to be resident in Italy, you just need to arrive in Italy a few days before the wedding date. In some cases, specifically for US and Australian citizens, you need to be in Italy at least one week before the wedding.
Catholic Ceremonies: Religious ceremonies performed by Roman Catholic clergy sometimes do not require a separate civil ceremony. It is becoming increasingly difficult to secure religious ceremonies for foreign citizens because not all Dioceses authorise foreign weddings in Italy. Your best chance in this case is to seek advice from a qualified Wedding Planner who can assist you for your religious ceremony in Italy and provide an English speaking priest. The Catholic Church also requires baptismal and confirmation certificates. As for the religious paperwork required, a part will have to be produced in your country by your local priest or Diocese. You will need to obtain the Nihil Obstat from your local diocese, signed by your bishop, in order to be married in an Italian parish.
Other Religious Ceremonies: It is also possible to arrange other types of religious ceremonies, for example Protestant, Anglican and Jewish. Please note that other religious ceremonies are not recognized by the Italian authorities; to ensure the legality of the marriage, a valid civil ceremony is required prior to the religious ceremony -- either in Italy or at home.
Symbolic Ceremonies: this consists of a blessing or a symbolic ceremony, this can be held in any location. This solution is recommended when the couple wishes to get married in a stunning wedding venue where a legal civil ceremony is not authorised.
Required Documentation for non-resident foreign citizens:
- Austrian, Swiss, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Turkish and Luxembourg citizens must submit a certificate of their capacity to contract marriage issued in pursuance of the Convention signed at Munich on September, 5th 1980 by their own Municipality of residence.
- United States citizens must submit the sworn statement made at the American Consulate in Italy subsequently legalized in Prefecture Office in Italy and the attested affidavit made at the Italian Consulate in United States.
- Australian citizens must submit the sworn statement made at the Australian Consulate in Italy subsequently legalized in Prefecture Office in Italy and the attested affidavit made at the Italian Consulate in Australia.
- All other foreign nationals (i.e. UK and Irish citizens) must submit a declaration issued by the relevant authorities of their own country (Embassy or Consulate in Italy) stating that, in accordance with the laws to which they are subject, they are free to marry.
All civil ceremonies require by Italian Law the attendance of an Interpreter and two witnesses, one for the Bride and one for the Groom.