Basic Info from the Mexican Government
Getting married in Mexico
In Mexico only civil marriage is recognized as legal. Persons wishing to get married in Mexico may also have a religious ceremony, but it will have no legal implications. A civil wedding in Mexico is fully valid for legal purposes worldwide. However, a religious wedding without a civil ceremony is not.
Foreigners are not subject to a residence requirement, but will have to identify themselves by presenting their tourist cards and/or visas as well as a copy of their passports.
Marriages are performed for a small fee at the “Oficina del Registro Civil” (Civil Register Office), but they may be performed elsewhere for an additional fee, which should be ascertained from the Civil Register. There are offices of the Civil Register in each city or small town in Mexico.
Divorced persons cannot marry in Mexico until one year after the divorce has been pronounced. Persons under 18 years of age cannot be married without a parent or legal guardian consent.
Foreigners must present the following:
- An application, including a statement as to whether they wish to marry under joint or separate property (forms available at the Civil Register).
- A certified copy of their birth certificate.
- If necessary, a certified copy of the divorce decree previously legalized by the Mexican Consular Office under whose jurisdiction the divorced was pronounced.
- Thorax x-ray plates.
- Blood tests (it is suggested that this test be done in Mexico, so that the results be written in Spanish).
- Two legally qualified witnesses (over 18 years of age, who must be present at the ceremony).
Copies of marriage certificates will be available at the corresponding Civil Register Office.
Foreigners wishing to marry a Mexican citizen must obtain authorization from the National Institute for Migration (Instituto Nacional de Migración).
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Posted by jennifer j. rose
The indispensable requirement is a fiance.
The legal requirements vary from state to state, so it would be wise to verify with the locale before you embark on your wedding plans. In most resort areas, there are no doubt wedding planners and concierge staff at major hotels who could take care of the paperwork so that everything could proceed smoothly.
In addition to directing you through the maze that’s part of Mexico, you will have the much-needed benefit of having someone who speaks the language. That small investment could save time in traipsing back and forth to government offices and waiting around….when you could be better spending your time enjoying your vacation.
If you are a non-Mexican marrying another non-Mexican national, there should be no problem. However, one party is a Mexican citizen, then special advance permission is necessary to marry a foreigner; it’s not a big deal, but it’s another step which will cause a snag in your plans.
Both parties should have current passports, certified copies of their birth certificates, and witnesses (in Cancun, I’ve heard that four are required). There may be a waiting period of several days from application to issuance of the license, and blood tests may be required, again dependent upon the state in which you marry.
Under Mexican law, all marriages are conducted by a civil authority. The religious ceremony is not officially recognized as it is in the United States….you’re not going to find the Vegas-style wedding chapel in Mexico.
After you have married, be sure to obtain several certified copies of your marriage record, or marriage license….it’s easier to do this on the spot than trying to come up with proof of your marriage several years later once you’ve returned to your home country.