• Jess Sloan

Getting Married in Spain


There are two categories of marriage in Spain:

  1. People from other countries who are not legal residents of Spain, but who wish to marry.

  2. Those who are Spanish nationals or are legally resident in Spain.


1) Getting married in Spain if you are not a legal resident.

Many people decide they wish to come to Spain to perform their marriage ceremonies.

The UK government provides very helpful advice on how to arrange this: https://www.gov.uk/marriage-abroad/y/spain

The government or Embassy of your own country may also provide guidance. You also need to contact the Civil Registry/Town Hall where you wish to get married, to find out if there are any local requirements you need to consider. You can find the details of the local civil registries HERE.


NB – In some regions of Spain, to get married at least one of the couple needs to be either a Spanish national or a legal resident of Spain.


Church weddings


Church weddings are recognised as legal in Spain and the parish church where you wish to get married will provide you with guidance on the procedure to arrange this. Please contact the priest/minister in the church where you wish to get married at least 6 months in advance of the date of the ceremony. You must ensure that whoever will conduct the wedding is legally licensed to do so.

Other Religious Weddings


You will be required to present the clerical certification that expresses the required circumstances for the marriage to be recognised in Spain. Once the request has been approved, you will need to celebrate the marriage within 6 months.


Avoiding the bureaucracy


Many people choose to get married or arrange their Civil Partnership in their home country, and then travel to Spain with friends and relatives to repeat their vows and promises in a suitable venue, to avoid having to follow the paperwork processes here in Spain.



2) Legal residents in Spain who wish to marry another resident or Spanish national


The provisions of the Spanish Civil Code state that to marry or enter a Civil Partnership both parties must be over the age of 18 years.


Both civil and religious ceremonies are considered legal but to qualify for a civil ceremony you must be a legal resident of at least two years standing.


The process


There are regional variations in how to arrange a marriage or Civil Partnership and in the documents you will need to produce.


The first step should be to make an appointment with the Civil Register Office or your local Town Hall where you need to fill in a form registering your intention to marry.


Take the following documents with you:

  • passports/identity card

  • birth certificates

  • personal tax identification - NIE for the European partner and NIF for the Spaniard

  • empadronamiento documents (valid within the last 3 months)

  • certificate of divorce, if applicable

You will be advised if you need further documents or to have any translated into Spanish by an official translator. You can find a list of the officially recognised translators in this document.


The form indicating your intention to marry needs to be submitted to the “Registro Civil”, or civil registration office, who then publish it for a period of no less than 15 days – this is to give other people time to object to your union.

You can find more details about the process of registering your marriage here: https://www.mjusticia.gob.es/es/ciudadania/tramites/inscripcion-matrimonio

The ceremony

You will receive notification to make an appointment with an appointed official to legally marry you, witnessed by two other persons, and a formal entry is made to a register and a certificate of marriage issued to you as your copy of that entry.

Getting married in Church


There are additional specific requirements to get married in church, such as obtaining copies of your baptismal certificate etc. Please contact the priest/minister in the church where you wish to get married at least 6 months in advance of the date of the ceremony.

Other Religious Weddings


You will be required to present the clerical certification that expresses the required circumstances for the marriage to be recognised in Spain. Once the request has been approved, you will need to celebrate the marriage within 6 months.

In some areas of Spain, you can make an appointment online with the Civil Registry using this link: https://sede.administracionespublicas.gob.es/icpplustiej/citar?i=es&org=JUS-RC

You will need to select your province, followed by the office you wish to make an appointment at.


We hope you found this information useful. If you need further help, please do not hesitate to contact on our Infoline.


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