It’s a lot less work to have a symbolic ceremony in Mexico than a legal one. To aid in your decision here is the fine print! To be legally wed in Mexico, you must bring your passports, tourist card, have blood tests and have your documents translated into Spanish and notarized.
Canadian citizens or Permanent residents in Canada must present the following documents before the officer of Registro Civil (equivalent to the Office of the Registrar General) of the city or town where the marriage is going to take place:
a) A filled application form (provided at the local Registro Civil). This includes an agreement prepared by the couple indicating whether their marriage will be signed under the system of separate or common ownership of their goods and properties.
b) A certified copy of their birth certificates (long version), previously legalized by the Mexican Consular Office having jurisdiction over the region where the birth certificates was issued.
c) In the case one of the parties has been married before, the couple must present a certified copy of the divorce decree, legalized by the Mexican Consular Office having jurisdiction over the region where the divorce decree was issued; or, a certified copy of the Death Certificate, legalized by the Mexican Consular Office with jurisdiction over the place where the spouse died.
d) A physician’s certificate stating that according to the blood tests and X- Rays taken in Mexico, neither applicant suffers from any contagious disease.
e) Two legally qualified witnesses (over 18 years old), who must be present at the ceremony, swearing that the applicants do not have any legal impediment to marry.
f) Payment of a fee.
- All documents with the exception of your passport much be translated into Spanish and then notarized. Contact the Mexican Consular Office for details and pricing.
- When you arrive in Mexico, you will meet with your wedding coordinator and start the process of attaining your marriage license right away, bring with you all the documents you needed to be notarized and translated beforehand. After your blood tests and X-Ray results are back, you will complete the application form and submit it to the local civil registry with all your documents. Then there is a waiting period. It could be 30 minutes or a few days before your application is processed.
- You must arrive at least 3 business days prior to your legal wedding date in order to complete blood tests and process documents however 4 to 5 business days is recommended.
- Blood tests by done by a Mexican doctor to determine blood type, and HIV, STD tests are taken. Results are usually returned in about 24 hours. If tests are positive, your wedding license will not be approved.
- Legal ceremonies require the bride and groom to have 2 witnesses over 18 years of age with valid passport and tourist card and they must arrive at least 3 business days prior to the legal wedding. Your resort can also provide witnesses if you require.
- Each state in Mexico has its own laws and requirements may vary state to state. Complete details will be given from the resort/hotel that you choose to marry at.
- In some states divorced people cannot marry in Mexico until one year after the divorce order has been issued by the judge, unless otherwise indicated in the divorce decree.
- Only CIVIL ceremonies are legal in Mexico and are performed by a Justice of the Peace. Legal ceremonies are not performed on Mexican holidays such as Jan 1, Feb 5, Easter weekend, May 1, May 5, Sep 15 & 16, Nov 1 & 2, Nov 20, Dec 12, Dec 24, 25 & 31st.
- Once your civil wedding ceremony is completed, you will need to obtain the certified copy of the Original Marriage Certificate. You must request it from the Registro Civil, once the marriage has been performed. This document can be legalized by the Canadian Embassy or Canadian Consulates in Mexico, so it can be recognized thereafter as a valid document by any Canadian authority.
And if that is all too much work for you…..
Symbolic and Renewal of Vows ceremony- No license is required and you are not required to arrive 3 business days prior to your wedding ceremony. Simply contact the resort or wedding planner to confirm date and time! Symbolic weddings can be performed on certain holidays.
Religious ceremony– They must be performed by a priest and require official letters from the bride and groom’s house of worship. Catholic ceremonies must be performed in a church. Religious ceremonies are not legal between foreign nationalities.
Cruise weddings – if you would like to be married in one of Mexico’s ports, you must choose a symbolic ceremony.
Are the wedding ceremonies performed in English or in Spanish?
A civil (legal) ceremony must be performed in Spanish. A staff member from the resort will translate in English during your ceremony. Symbolic, renewal and religious ceremonies are performed in English.
Please feel free to comment below and contact me to start planning your wedding in Mexico!