Important things to consider: Legal aspects

The non-EU citizen who wants to marry in Italy must apply for a marriage permit from the Consulate or Embassy of his country in Italy. The authorization is a declaration showing that, according to the laws of one’s own State, there are no impediments to marry.

Once the clearance has been obtained at the wedding, it is necessary to go to the Legalization Office of the Prefecture to have the ambassador’s or the Consul’s signature authenticated.

It must be remembered that some foreign Embassies or Consulates in Italy do not issue the permit to the foreign citizen if they do not have a residence permit and a passport.

In these cases, given that the authorization to the wedding is a document necessary to be able to marry in Italy, the foreign citizen will have to go to his own country to request it at the competent offices.

If one intends to marry according to Catholic worship or according to other cults admitted by the Italian State it will be necessary to make a request to the parish priest or minister of the cult who will celebrate the marriage.

Once obtained the permit, and after having legalized it in the Prefecture, the foreign citizen must go, together with his future spouse, to the Ufficio Matrimoni dell’Anagrafe centrale del Comuneof the town the couple want to marry and present the following documentation:

1. valid identity document of both future spouses;

2. birth certificate authenticated by the Embassy of the country of origin;

3. authorization issued by the Consulate or Embassy;

4. self-certification of free status and residence

5. request delivered to the pastor or minister of the other cult that will celebrate the marriage.

The registrar will therefore set the appointment for the oath.

On the day set for the oath, the promise of wedding will be publicly exchanged before the registrar. The oath must have two witnesses present for each spouse. In the case of foreign witnesses, they must have a valid residence permit.

At the request of future foreign spouses it is possible to request the presence of an interpreter.

The Office will then publish it, that is, it will display a sheet with the names of future spouses and the place where they will marry in the municipal notice board of the Municipality.

After 8 days (including at least 2 Sundays) from publication, the Weddings Office will issue the certificate of publication.

This document must be delivered, within 180 days, to the Civil Status Officer at the Municipality of residence to fix the date of the wedding.

There are particular cases in which there are differences with respect to the general rules.

– foreigners recognized as refugees under the Geneva Convention:

If the foreign citizen has been recognized as a refugee, he must apply for authorization to the A.C.N.U.R. (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) presenting a notarial deed done in the Prefecture with the name, surname, state of origin and marital status of the two witnesses with an identity document.

– US citizens

If the citizen is American, instead of the authorization, he will have to present a sworn declaration made before the U.S. Consul. with a certified signature in the Prefecture, a notary deed made before the single judge and a birth certificate.


According to Italian law, all the income produced and the goods acquired by one of the spouses after the marriage are the property of both spouses (communion of goods). If the spouses prefer instead the separation of the goods it is necessary that they declare it at the time of the wedding.

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