The surname of the wife after a wedding in Italy
Tradition for women in Italy to keep their family surname even after marriage
Women in Italy don’t change their last-names when they marry. It is the law, there is no legal procedure by which a woman could change her surname to her husband’s, even if she wanted to.
Spouses keep their original surnames. According to the Italian Civil Code (article 143 bis), a woman who marries keeps her surname and has the option of adding her husband’s surname after hers. Non-Italian citizens getting married in Italy will not have their surname changed in Italy, and will continue to use it in official documents, ID cards, passports etc. for the rest of her life.
In genealogy, this is very important: if you find a woman named LUCIA SANESTRO on a list, she will know in advance that her father’s last name is SANESTRO. During a genealogical investigation, it is possible to find children who were not recognized by their parents. This could happen for several reasons: they are abandoned children or because of the conflicts between the Catholic Church and the Italian state.
In these links you will find more information about this topic:
Name Change After Wedding in Italy – In Italy we do not change our surname, never, not because of a wedding or whichever other reason unless a court, after a serious and dramatic reason requires us to do so. Also we cannot change our middle names or skip them in official documents, at all!
Changing Names: Italian Women Keep Their Own Surname Upon Marriage – Women in Italy don’t change their last-names when they marry.
Women: Maiden Name on Passport – In Italy, women use their maiden name for life