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Mexico Marriage Laws for Civil Weddings in Vallarta
email this pageprint this pageemail usPlanning on getting married in Puerto Vallarta? If so, it's essential to know the local laws and regulations to make sure your Mexico marriage is legal. In Mexico, a civil marriage is valid for legal purposes worldwide, however, a spiritual wedding without first being married in a civil ceremony is not.

By presenting the required documents and following the prescribed marriage laws below, foreign citizens can be legally married in Puerto Vallarta. The Matrimonio Civil is performed by a Justice of the Peace at the local Registro Civil. After the civil ceremony, the Judge's office will issue an Acta de Matrimonio (marriage certificate) which is recognized by the government of Mexico and most countries.

If after having read through this information, you wonder if you can handle all of the red tape, don't panic! Your wedding coordinator will be with you every step of the way. They'll help you with the necessary paperwork and walk you through all of the procedures to ensure that your wedding in Puerto Vallarta is both legal and stress-free.

Current Mexican Marriage Laws

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 are not subject to residency requirement, but will have to identify themselves by presenting their tourist cards and/or visas as well as a copy of their passports.

In the case of two non-Mexicans, the civil marriage process is designed to eliminate undue delay. However, if one of the spouses is a Mexican national, permission must be given by the Secretaria de Gobernación; this request may require several months to be processed.

At the time of entering into the civil marriage, the couple must declare that they are being married either: (a) with all goods and property in common (all goods held as “community property”) or (b) under the regime of “separación de bienes” which means that each individual will maintain ownership of their pre-marriage property.

If one or both individuals has previously been married to a person still living, then proof of a legal divorce must be provided. These must be certified under the "Apostille Protocol."

Persons previously married must present proof of the termination of that marriage in the form of a divorce decree or death certificate. If the divorce or death took place outside of Mexico, it must be authenticated and translated into Spanish. Divorced people cannot marry in Mexico until one year after the termination of the divorce. If either party is widowed, the death certificate of the deceased spouse will be needed as part of the documentation requirements.

Witnesses - You will need to have 4 witnesses present at the legal ceremony, and they must have valid identification.

Validity Outside of Mexico - Your Marriage Certificate will be valid worldwide, but you should get your certificate legalized in Mexico to ensure it is legally accepted when you get back home.

Before a couple may be married by the Church they must have been married under civil law by a judge or justice of the peace. It does not matter whether the civil ceremony is performed in Mexico or in some other country, but proof of the marriage must be presented.

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving
the included information for research and educational purposes • m3 © 2008 BanderasNews ® all rights reserved • carpe aestus