Marriage in Mexico: An Introduction
Mexico has some excellent places to get married alongside some picture perfect scenarios. From golden beaches with turquoise waters, to old colonial cities with their charm, old buildings, cobbled streets domes and archways.
Mexico is becoming increasingly popular as a destination for American and Canadians to get married, and given the opportunity to get married amongst stunning scenery, it’s not hard to see why!
If you want to get married in Mexico, there is nothing legal or technical stopping you from doing so; but you will need to plan ahead and get a few documents together, fill in a few forms and pay a few fees. This guide will steer you through the maze.
If after having read through this guide you wonder if you can face the paperwork and admin, don’t panic! You can hire Wedding Planners to take care of the detail and paperwork on your behalf in return for a modest fee.
Legal Requirements for a Marriage in Mexico
People under the age of 18 may not get married in Mexico without parental consent. With parental consent, boys have to be at least 16 and girls need to be at least 14 years of age.
Foreigners Getting Married to Foreigners
You don’t need to be resident in Mexico in order to get married here, you’ll just need a passport and your tourist permit, plus some other paperwork (see below). If you plan to get married to a Mexican in Mexico, you will need additional documentation – read the section just ahead…
Chest X-rays and Blood Tests
These must be done locally in Mexico, as the results of the blood tests and the X-ray documentation must be in Spanish and the tests need to be done within a certain time frame of the Marriage Application Form being completed. Not all Mexican States require the Chest X-rays: Check locally or ask your wedding planner .
You will need to have 4 witnesses present at the legal ceremony, and they must have valid identification: usually a valid Passport is used, but other forms of government-issued identification are valid too.
Validity Outside of Mexico
Your Marriage Certificate will be valid world-wide, BUT you should get your certificate ‘legalized’ in Mexico to ensure it is legally accepted when you get back home. The process is the reverse of getting your native documentation legalized by the necessary authorities (e.g. Foreign Office / State Department) for marriage in Mexico (see below); The registry office in Mexico will tell you where this can be done locally or if you hire a wedding planner. he/she will advise.
Two Marriages: Civil and Religious
The Civil Marriage
If you would like to get married in a church in Mexico, this can be arranged, although additional planning and fees will be required. A good wedding planner will be able to make these arrangements on your behalf.
Each State in Mexico has slightly different laws in regard to when previously married couples may re-marry. Most places require that BOTH the bride and groom are to be are divorced (starting from the date of final divorce decree) at least one full calendar year before re-marrying.
For example, in Quintana Roo, the State where Cancun is located (one of the most popular venues), only women (not men) who have been previously married, may not re-marry there for 300 calendar days following the the date of the final decree of divorce unless during that time they have given birth or can prove “by medical dictate” that they are not pregnant.
You’ll need to check with the local authorities in the State where you plan to get re-married if you have not been divorced for at least a year. Alternatively, hire the services of a wedding planner who will check this for you as part of their service.
If either party is widowed, the death certificate of the deceased spouse will be needed as part of the documentation requirements (see below)…
Documents Required to Get Married in Mexico
The couple getting married will be required to present the following documentation and requisites.
Some requirements differ from State to State; check locally, but be prepared to gather together all of the documents listed below.
Important! Foreign documents listed below (with the exception of your passport and travel permit) will need to be:
- Translated into Spanish;
- Notarized by your nearest Mexican Consulate and;
- Be ‘Legalized’ in the country where you live by the appropriate organization / authorities (see note below about legalization)
Marriage Application Forms
These forms are attained from the local registry office in Mexico. You will need to specify whether you will get married under joint or separate property on this form.
Full Passport, valid for at least 6 months and a copy of same (both the bride and groom).
Original copies of the tourist permit (FMM) which was completed at the port of entry or other immigration permit (FM3, FM2, etc.).
These will need to be certified and translated by an approved translator. Contact your nearest Mexican Consulate for details about certification.
If the woman was previously married, or either partner is widowed, copies of the Divorce Decree or Death Certificate, if applicable, (see section above: Previously Married) will be required for presentation.