September 22, 2019 /
Getting Married in Italy for Foreigners
Having legal experts in our team consents us to assist you along the whole legal procedure to get you legally married in Italy with all the necessary documents needed!
And well, if you’re wondering how to get married in Italy as a foreigner, you’ve landed in the right place today!
When it comes to understanding the exact procedure for getting married in Italy, you suddenly realize that the information online is not clear enough.
Considering that for each country of origin, there is a specific agreement or Convention to refer to. Often, the biggest problem concerns different types of nationality and residence of the spouses.
Thanks to our substantial experience in the legal sector, we can undoubtedly help you by guaranteeing you legal assistance for your wedding in Italy.
Firstly, consider that foreign citizens who have decided to get married in Italy will have to present the authorization to marry according to art. 116 of the Civil Code.
We are talking about the so-called “Nulla Osta.” This document will state that there are no impediments to your marriage regarding your country of origin rules.
So… let’s examine together all the cases that can occur in regards to all the marriage requirements to get married in Italy if you are a foreigner:
1. one of the future spouses is a foreigner living in Italy.
In addition to the nulla osta, banns of marriage (the so-called “pubblicazioni di Matrimonio”) must be publicized in the Municipality of residence of the Italian or foreigner spouse in the Italian Municipality where they live.
2. both the foreigner spouses do not live in Italy.
In this case, banns of marriage do not need to be issued, and the couple will have to swear a declaration provided by the decree of the President November 3, 2000, n. 396 in which the future spouses declare that there are name no impediment of kinship, affinity, of adoption or affiliation, according to article 87 of the Italian civil code, if the spouses have already contracted a previous marriage and whether the spouses are in the conditions indicated in the articles 85 and 88 of the civil code.
Who issues the Nulla Osta?
The nulla osta is issued by the “competent authority” and need to be requested from:
Local Authority in the country of origin:
The nulla osta, if issued in the language of the country of origin, must be duly translated into Italian and legalized by the Italian Embassy or Consulate, except if specific Conventions eliminate this requirement.
- Hague Convention (October 5, 1961) consents to obtain a Nulla Osta that doesn’t need to be legalized in Italy. Therefore, those who come from a country adhering to this Convention do not need to go to the Consular Representation and request legalization, but can go to the competent internal Authority designated by each State – and indicated for each country in the act of accession to the Convention itself (usually the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) – to obtain the affixing of the apostille on the document. This document is automatically recognized in Italy. The updated list of countries that have ratified the Hague Convention (Aja Convention) and one of the competent authorities that can affix the apostille for each State is available on the website of the Aja Conference http://www.hcch.net/.
- Munich Convention (September 5, 1980) allows you to only ask the competent authorities in your own country for a certificate of legal capacity to marry. Countries that have signed this Convention are Austria, Italy, Germany, Greece, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.
- London Convention (June 7, 7 1968) stated that Nulla Osta emanated by the following countries are exempted from legalization: Austria, Cyprus, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Norway, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Czech Republic, Republic of Moldova, United Kingdom, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Belgium.
- Brussels Convention of May 25, 1987, abolished any form of legalization between Belgium, Denmark, France, Ireland, Latvia, Italy. Although adhering to the Brussels Convention, the legalization, consular, or apostille regime remains valid for the other EU states if they adhere to the Hague Convention of October 5, 1961.
- Budapest Convention of May 26, 1977, has abolished legalization for all acts issued in Hungary.
- Vienna Convention
- COUNTRIES ADHERING TO THE 1976 VIENNA CONVENTION will obtain a marriage certificate from the town hall (Italian town hall in your case) on a multilingual model exempt from translation and legalization).
- The countries that have ratified the Vienna Convention are Austria, Belgium, Bosnia Herzegovina, Croatia, France, Germany, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Moldova, and Montenegro Holland, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.
- or… from a Diplomatic or Consular Authority in Italy:
The authorization is issued by the Consulate or the foreign Embassy in Italy.
Usually, it is already drawn up in Italian. Therefore, it must be legalized by the competent Italian Prefecture unless one of the Conventions, as mentioned above, is applicable.
Also…is the Residency permit required to get married in Italy?
There is no legal residence requirement for a legally binding marriage in Italy.
You do not need a residency permit either.
Therefore if you do not have the so-called “permesso di soggiorno” (residency permit), you can indeed get married in Italy to an Italian citizen or a foreigner.
Indeed, the Italian Constitutional Court, with sentence no. 245 of 25 July 2011, declared that foreign citizens without a residence permit could marry in Italy.Contact us
And what about political refugees?
Political refugees can marry in Italy. It will be sufficient to present a certificate attesting to their refugee status issued by the Alto Commissariato of the United Nations.
Furthermore, what happens with minors and previous marriages?
There are also specific cases in which Italian law requires additional requirements, even for foreign citizens, so that a marriage is legally valid:
1) Divorced women cannot marry before three hundred days from the issue of the divorce decree;
2) In the case of a widowed person, the certificate of the first marriage and the death certificate of the deceased spouse is required;
3) Italian law requires the Juvenile Court (Tribunale dei Minori) a marriage between foreign minors. However, to get legally married -in any case- the couple must be at least 16 years old.
Additional documentation may be required if the foreign couple wishes to celebrate a Catholic wedding, such as the baptism certificate or a certificate attesting attendance at a premarital course or, sometimes, permission granted by the minister for the validity of the rite.
What if I marry an Italian person and want to know how to get Italian citizenship after my wedding?
The process is not complex if you can wait two years with a residency in Italy or three years living abroad. Also, you will have asked to learn Italian, obtaining at least level B1. To get further detail about the legal procedure, please check out the guide on how to get Italian citizenship after the wedding.
However, what kind of wedding are you willing to celebrate in Italy?
Most weddings are celebrated according to civil or religious rites.
Therefore Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Catholic weddings can be legally binding either.
However, foreign citizens need mandatory documents to get married in Italy regardless of nationality and religious faith.
To understand the complexity of the international convention and Italian rules to get married in Italy for foreigners we strongly suggest you read our article about marriage requirements for foreigners in Italy and the one about legal marriage in Italy case your country of provenance were one of the following:
If you are a US citizen, please read our post about how an American citizen can get married in Italy. If you are Australian, please read our article about how an Australian citizen can get married in Italy.