Malta is a Roman Catholic country with ninety-one percent of Maltese people belonging to the Roman Catholic religion, although Anglican Church weddings can also be celebrated. Religious weddings are legally binding provided the couple comply with the requirements of the Public Registry in Malta.
The following information is intended to be a starting point and guideline only.
Although much care and effort has been taken to make sure that the information provided hereunder is correct, please do not take it as legal advice. For any further information, assistance or clarification kindly contact our in-house Wedding specialists.
Roman Catholic Church Weddings in Malta
Couples seeking to have a Roman Catholic wedding in Malta should contact our in-house Weddings Planner with regards to the required paperwork.
The couple should allow six months before their wedding date to prepare the required church documents. You should contact your local parish priest in the UK to obtain the following documents:
- Pre-Nuptial Investigation Forms.
- Affidavits of Freedom to Marry for both Bride and Groom.
- Baptism and Confirmation Certificates (this can not be issued more than six months in advance).
- Priest’s written statement that pre-marital instructions have been given.
- Permission by the Ordinary or his delegate for marriage for marriage to be celebrated outside his Diocese (in this case Malta).
- Any required dispensations from the Diocese of the Catholic party.
Once the documents have been completed they are then forwarded by your local parish to the Chancellory (or your Bishop’s administration offices). They are then checked and forwarded onto the Maltese Curia (Archbishop’s administration). Here the documents will again be checked and finally be forwarded on to the local parish priest in Malta who is to perform your wedding.
There is an administration fee to pay associated with the above process, as well as a contribution fee.
Anglican Church Weddings in Malta
In order for a couple to have an Anglican Wedding in Malta, one or both parties must be baptized Anglican.
You may wish to consider a religious blessing, bearing in mind that this ceremony is not legally binding so you may wish to have a Civil Wedding in your country before flying out to Malta. This option is popular with partners where one or both have previously been divorced.
Whatever type of religious ceremony you opt for there are officiates who are able to perform the wedding ceremony in English, however if your ceremony is conducted in Maltese you should arrange to have an interpreter present if neither of you speak Maltese.
There is no residence requirement, however, couples are required to visit the Marriage Registry in Valletta to finalise the paperwork before their wedding day, so it may be advisable to fly out 2-3 days earlier. You will both need to have your original passports with you.
Certificate of No Impediment
First both marrying parties must apply for a Certificate of No Impediment from their local Register Office in respective countries. This process takes 21 days, during which time banns will be published in the register office. Provided there are no queries arising from your application, you will be given a Certificate of No Impediment. The certificate will be valid for 3 months from the date of issue.
If you intend to marry in Malta you will need the following documentation:
1. A copy of the full birth certificate for both the bride and groom authenticated by a solicitor (lawyer or notary). You are also required to bring the original full birth certificate with you to Malta. Under Maltese Law the original birth certificate, along with all the other completed legal documentation, must remain in Malta. You can obtain a copy of your full birth certificate from your local registry office in your country for a small fee. It would be wise to do this before you hand over your original documents in Malta.
2. A copy of valid passports for both the bride and groom authenticated by a solicitor.
3. A photocopy of valid passports of two witnesses who must be 18 years of age and over.
4. An Affidavit / Statutory Declaration confirming single status also know as a Certificate of Celibacy.
5. If previously married, a copy of the Certificate for your 1st marriage authenticated by a solicitor which should then be accompanied by a copy of the Decree of Absolute authenticated by a solicitor.
6. If widowed, a copy of a spouses death certificate and a copy of the previous marriage certificate authenticated by a solicitor.
7. An Affidavit by 3rd person drawn up in the presence of a solicitor, stating that since the death of former spouse / date of divorce, one did not re-marry (if applicable).
8. If you have changed your name by Deed Poll or you were adapted, proof is required which then must be authenticated by a solicitor.
9. Parent consent required in the form of Statutory Declaration/Affidavit authenticated by a solicitor.
10. Complete Form RZ1 Certificate (Application Form), which does not need to be authenticated by a solicitor.
10. Complete RZ2 Certificate (Declaration Form). The bride and groom must each complete a separate form, both of which need then be authenticated by a solicitor.
Our in-house Wedding Planner can assist you with the handling of all the basic documentation which should be forwarded to the Marriage Registry in Malta not less than 7 weeks prior to the wedding day, but not more 3 months.
If you are having a Church wedding you will also need to provide the Marriage Registry with the following information:
1. The date of the wedding.
2. The church where the marriage is to be performed.
3. The name of the priest or minister who is the perform the ceremony.
4. The name which the bride will be using after she is married (either her maiden name of her husband's name).
You must apply for your Marriage Certificate at the Civil Status Section, Public Registry, in Valletta. For a fee you can obtain a full copy of the original Act of Marriage. Please contact the Civil Status Section in advance so they can advise you on the necessary paperwork.
Although your marriage in Malta is legally binding, you will not be able to register it back in the UK or any other country. This however in no way makes your marriage invalid.