If you are thinking of a Lake Garda wedding then you will be wondering if it’s possible to have a legal wedding ceremony here. The easy answer is yes for British, Irish, German, Dutch, American, Polish, Austrian, Belgian & Chinese citizens and of course others but these have been my experience so far. Of course the paperwork required for each of these different nationalities will change from country to country so that’s something that we need to study today.
Important to know is that Italians only accept certificates issued within 6months of the date so you cannot start this sooner.
Below is a step by step guide to completing your paperwork for your Italian wedding on Lake Garda if both bride and groom are UK nationals living in the UK.
UK nationals residing somewhere else have different procedures to follow . Please contact me for advice.
Irish nationals have yet another format to adhere to, please get in contact.
I frequently assist non British couples with their wedding on Lake Garda, if this is your case please state this when you get in touch.
Obtain a certificate of no impediment
You will need to make an appointment at your local town hall/registry office to obtain a certificate of no impediment. The appointment should be NO MORE than 6 months before your wedding date if you are resident in the UK, 3 months if you are resident in Scotland
You need to obtain a certificate of no impediment which is issued in the UK. To do this you must give notice of marriage to your local registry office. After your notice has been posted for the required period of time you will be issued with a ‘Certificate of no impediment ‘ signed and dated by your local registrar. The names that you give to the registrar MUST match the names on your passports. Please take your passport with you to the registry office just to be sure.
There is an important side note here. If you are female and have been previously married you must, by Italian law, have been divorced for at least 300 days prior to your new wedding. There is a way around this, I wouldn’t reccomend it. If either of you have been divorced you will need to take your decree absolute with you to the registry office.
The Statutory declaration
While you are waiting for your certificate of no impediment you should make a statutory declaration before a solicitor or public notary in the UK. You will be supplied with a prepared form to complete. Use this form please and insist with your solicitor if they resist.
The declaration is required by the Italian authorities and gives additional information that isn’t given on your certificate of no impediment. The solicitor or notary public will charge a fee for this service so it will be worth shopping around.
Legalising the documents for the Italian authorities
When you have your certificate of no impediment and you have made your statutory declaration you will need to send them both to the FCO legalisation office in Milton Keynes to be legalised, this can only be done by post, however an application form is to be filled in before posting the documents. There is a cost for legalising the documents, please check the link for updated prices and methods of payment.
Your legalised documents are returned to you by post, there will be a charge for this, at present it is £6 but please check this link for any updates before sending your paperwork http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/about-us/what-we-do/services-we-deliver/legal-services/Legalisation/030-Links/010-How-to-apply/Postage-costs . Alternatively, if you choose the pay on line option, you can send them an A4 self-addressed envelope with pre-paid postage (e.g sufficient stamps or a prepaid express envelope such as Fedex or Royal Mail). Please see the attached application form and information about filling this in.
Send the documents to Italy
Send me the documents that have been returned to you from Milton Keynes, along with a photocopy of yours and your witness passports.
Weddings at Lake Garda
Via Gaslago, 32
25080 Polpenazze del Garda (BS)
If possible please send these by registered post.
Translation of your certificate of no impediment.
This will be done by Weddings at Lake Garda and I will then take it to the Italian law courts on your behalf where it will have an Italian equivalent apostle.
If you live in Italy or any other country outside the UK, or you are not a British national the document procedure will be different, Please contact me for further information.
It goes without saying that while this is the least exciting part of the preparations for your wedding it is the most important.