It is easy to imagine why it is increasingly common for couples to want to say “I do” in Mexico. Without a doubt, they are looking for the wonderful and unforgettable settings that Mexico offers, such as beautiful beaches with golden sands and turquoise waters, colonial cities, cobbled streets, magical cenotes, magical towns, and even modern and fancy hotels in its major cities.
All these attractions make American, Canadian, and British couples dream of getting married in this beautiful country and, truth said, there are no legal or technical constraints that prevent them from doing so.
So, if you are thinking of a destination wedding in our beautiful country and are wondering how to get married in Mexico, we’ll share with you some useful tips.
Keep in mind that you should plan your ceremony in advance, gather some documents, fill out forms and pay some fees.
However, if you consider all this “paperwork” complicated, bulky, or undoable due to lack of time, you can hire a Wedding Planner to take care of all the documentation, so you can fulfill your dream to marry in a country that, for centuries, has been considered a place of abundant beauty.
It is important that you know you do not need to be a Mexican resident, nor be Mexican, to get married in Mexico.
American or foreign citizens who wish to marry in Mexico can do so. The involved parts only must present to the corresponding Civil Registry Office the documents detailed below. It is important that all documents, except for the passport, are apostilled (certified by an authority in your country), in the country where they were issued.
The ceremony must be carried out in Spanish, but you can always hire a professional translator so your guests can follow.
How to get married in Mexico: legal requirements
Getting married in Mexico is easy. There are just a few legal requirements you will need to fulfill:
Fill out an application at the Civil Registry Office: As wedding planners, we take care of this. We’ll send you the forms to fill out, and then we make sure the judge receives them.
Present a blood test: issued by a laboratory in Mexico, stating that neither of the partners suffers from diseases that may be an impediment to marriage. The clinical analysis must be in Spanish and be done within a certain period after completing the Marriage Request Form. Not all Mexican states require chest x-rays: check locally if you will need to deliver them or not or consult your wedding planner.
If you are thinking about a wedding in Los Cabos, then you will only need a blood test done 2 days before the ceremony.
ID: The couple must identify themselves with their FMT Tourist Cards and valid passports (valid for at least 6 months), plus a photocopy of their Birth Certificates.
Visa: you will need a tourist visa, which we’ll be handed to you by the migration service upon your arrival to Mexico.
Permits from the National Migration Institute: Foreigners who wish to marry a Mexican must get a permit from the Mexican National Migration Institute.
Present four witnesses: The bride and groom must be accompanied by 4 witnesses (2 each) who have to be present at the legal ceremony. Each one will have to show a valid ID, which can be a passport or any other form of identification issued by the government.
Receipts of paid fees: The cost of a Civil Registry Judge to celebrate a marriage can change according to the place and circumstances of the ceremony. It does not cost the same to get married directly at the Civil Registry offices, as to do it at home or at the place where the celebration will take place. Rates may also vary depending on the area of our country where you wish to marry. However, the costs differ between $1,500 and $5,500 Mexican pesos (about $75 to $250USD). As wedding planners, we take care of paying the fees with anticipation.
Religious and symbolic ceremonies
If you want to get married under man’s and God’s laws, it is possible in Mexico. Undoubtedly, it is an exceptional idea, because Mexico is full of beautiful churches, details, and mystical environments.
You and your partner should know that religious weddings and other symbolic ceremonies are possible but will not have legal recognition (Only civil weddings are legally recognized).
If you want to get married through the Catholic Church, you can do all the paperwork in the country where you live and process a transfer letter, which allows the wedding planner to carry out the procedures in Mexico so that you can get married and your marriage is valid all over the world.
You need to make the request for the language in which you want the ceremony to take place.
If a symbolic wedding is your wish, it is also possible to do it in Mexico. Just give notice regarding where you will celebrate it. You may want your best friend to officiate the ceremony. You can choose a sand ceremony, or a candle ceremony, to plant a tree, share a cup of wine, paint a canvas, tie the knot, etc.
Our work as wedding planners is to arrange everything so your ceremony runs smoothly and matches your vision.
Is same-sex marriage legal in Mexico?
If you are an equal couple and want to get married in Mexico, know that in 2015 the Supreme Court of Mexico changed the legal definition of marriage to include same-sex couples so, yes, same-sex-marriages are legal in almost all Mexican states.
Here is the list of states where there are legal precedents and you can celebrate a same-sex wedding: Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Campeche, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Mexico City (pioneer entity), Colima, Coahuila, State of Mexico, Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Michoacán, Morelos, Nayarit, Nuevo León, Oaxaca, Puebla, Querétaro, Quintana Roo, San Luis Potosí, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Veracruz, and Zacatecas.
In the rest of the country, it is possible to celebrate this type of marriage, but you will have to file an amparo (legal shelter procedure) to sue for the right to marry and wait for the court to issue their ruling in your case.
This way, you can fulfill your wish of getting married in Mexico nearly everywhere in the country.
Some extra tips
• For matters related to the certification and legalization of the documents required for the marriage and questions about marriage in Mexico, please contact your nearest Mexican consulate.
• If you plan to marry a Mexican citizen in Mexico, you may need to apply for a permit.
• After the marriage, your wedding planner will help you to get a certified copy of the Marriage Certificate from the Civil Registry office. We recommend that you also get the apostille of your Marriage Certificate for procedures that you want to carry on outside of Mexico. Check this directory of Mexican Consulates Abroad.
Hire a wedding planner
If you want to get married in Mexico, but you do not have enough time to put together all the documentation, you might need someone to help you obtain the necessary forms, schedule the blood tests at local clinics, and make any arrangements with local hotels, churches, and other venues for your marriage. You can hire a Wedding Planner to do all this for you.
If you are considering a beach wedding in Los Cabos to celebrate your big day, we, as wedding planners, will be happy to help you sort out all the legal aspects of your celebration. Schedule a complimentary consultation today.