Mexico Marriage Requirements

…beating the bureaucracy…

A few years ago my sister got this family tree software and started trying to trace where our family had come from.

I eagerly anticipated the results.

Unfortunately, there was not much of real interest to be gleaned from it.

  • No raging alcoholic artists or posthumously-famous painters.
  • No kings, queens, or flashy knights from bizarre countries that people immigrated from.
  • No connections to anyone who’s even slightly famous.

What was interesting to me was that family trees list where someone was born – and where they got married.

So after finding this out, I’m determined to spice up the family tree by eventually getting married in Mexico.

You can’t just have a family history that only includes boring locations – I’m going to be the one who changes that. (Well, that is if anyone can fall in love with a drunk and rambling idiot like myself.)

But the best thing is that if you get married in Mexico, it’s legal everywhere in the world.

Many people are put off about a Playa Del Carmen wedding because they think Mexico marriage requirements are difficult to acquire and understand.

But that’s not really true.

Here is everything you need to know.

But before I go deeper into explaining things, let me introduce you to someone who has more experience with weddings than anyone I know.

Meet Erica, the “Know-It-All” of Marriage Requirements In Mexico

Everyone loves someone who can answer all their questions, So this is your opportunity to meet someone who can.

However, please be respectful; Erica specializes in weddings in Playa Del Carmen, so please ONLY contact her if you are thinking of getting married HERE.

Moreover, marriage laws may vary from state to state, so it would not do you any good to take information from her if you’re getting married in a different Mexican state.

With that said, one thing that I can assure you is that Erica can answer all of your questions without any hesitation whatsoever.

Her and her partner Maria have planned hundreds (if not thousands) of weddings in the Playa Del Carmen area.

By the way, Erica is the one on the left with the call-out box next to her that says, “I’m Erica.” Maria is the other one. Duh. And if the picture appears a little ghost-like, it’s because I screwed up on the editing. Ooops. They don’t appear as phantoms in person.

To say that she has experience dealing with every aspect of weddings is an understatement – she would probably qualify to become a marriage attorney if such a thing existed.

Here are a few facts about her:

  • Erica is originally from Italy
  • She speaks perfect English, Italian, and Spanish
  • Erica worked as an event planner for Yaxche, a famous restaurant here
  • She started her own wedding planning business in 2001
  • She has been planning weddings since then
  • Erica is now the oldest (and most experienced) wedding planner in town
  • After establishing herself, Erica invited her childhood friend, Maria, to come and be her business partner
  • They now run the business together and have twice the “she-power” that Erica had alone
  • She knows her stuff (trust me, I interviewed her)

You can easily contact her using the form below:


    Why Get Married In Mexico

    Why not get married in Mexico?

    Who wants to go to some boring hotel wedding in the States.

    In Mexico you can get married on the beach, dance to a live salsa band, have a huge margarita cocktail party, and then go swimming with dolphins the next day.

    Mexico is beautiful, cheap, and offers lots of secluded places to tie the knot.

    What Are The Legal Requirements For Getting Married In Mexico

    Foreigners coming here to get married don’t need to be residents of Mexico.

    You can just be a tourist.

    • The most important Mexico marriage requirement for foreigners is a valid passport and tourism permit.
    • You will also need to be 18 years old. Although according to Mexican law, boys aged 16 and girls aged 14 can be married if they have parental consent.
    • The bride and groom must have a blood test in Mexico that tests for HIV and syphilis. No syphilitic weddings! You’ll have to arrive in Mexico at least three days before to ensure you get the results from the tests in time for the ceremony.

    There are two types of marriage.

    1. The civil ceremony which can be conducted in many different locations. Everyone must do this for the marriage to be legal.
    2. A religious ceremony which some couples also choose as well.

    How To Complete The Legal Formalities

    A civil wedding ceremony is performed by the Oficina del Registro Civil, either at their offices or at a location of the couple’s choice.

    Most Mexican officials are annoyingly slow and unhelpful.

    But the people from the wedding office seem to extremely accommodating.

    The paperwork is all in Spanish.

    That means completing a marriage application form in a foreign language.

    It’s not really a form you want to make mistakes on, so most people hire a local wedding planner to help them with the legal formalities.

    As part of their wedding packages, most Playa Del Carmen wedding resorts also organize all the legal stuff.

    You will need four witnesses and these must also have a valid passport and tourism card if they’re foreigners.

    How To Make Your Marriage Valid Worldwide

    The above Mexico marriage requirements make your marriage legal in Mexico.

    However you will need to submit all the documents when you get back home.

    For this reason you should get your marriage certificate legalized in Mexico, so it’s legally accepted when you get home.

    The registry office in Mexico and/or a wedding planner will advise on where you have to go.

    It All Sounds Too Easy. Are There Not More Mexico Marriage Requirements?

    If it’s two single foreign people getting married, then you don’t need any more information.

    However, if you’re planning to marry a Mexican, then there is a lot more paperwork to complete.

    You’ll have to obtain permission from the Mexican interior ministry – which basically means you have to give them $200 for a document called “Permiso para contraer matrimonio con un nacional.”

    Different rules also apply to divorced people wanting to get married.

    These rules tend to be pretty sexist as they usually place restrictions on divorced women getting married again if they’re not pregnant.

    For example in the state of Quintana Roo (where Playa Del Carmen is located), divorced women may not remarry for 300 calendar days from the date of their divorce.

    Men can get married the next day!

    Each state has different Mexican marriage requirements concerning this.

    What More Do I Need To Know About Mexico Marriage Requirements?

    Mexican law makers change their minds about things all the time.

    And when it comes to marriage, a lot of the law is left up to the individual states.

    This article is my current understanding of the Mexico marriage requirements.

    However, you should hire the services of someone who absolutely knows the current law here.

    I really recommend the services of Erica, who runs the oldest wedding planning service in Playa Del Carmen.

    She organized three of my friends’ weddings and was extremely helpful.

    She’s cut through all the red tape because of the massive amounts of weddings that she has planned.

    Contact her using the form above with your questions. She is normally extremely helpful.

    A marriage certificate isn’t something you want to get wrong.

    Imagine how that would look on a family tree in 200 years time!

    Maybe even most importantly, Erica can tell you how to legalize your marriage in your home country.

    Imagine flying home from Mexico and discovering that you have to do it all over again because of some mistake on the paperwork.

    Not a bad obligation if you have the time and money, but most of us don’t.

    So don’t leave it to chance.

    But, after saying that, Mexico marriage requirements are much simpler than most people imagine, and they don’t cost a lot of money.

    So if you’re coming to Playa Del Carmen to get married, I only have one thing left to say…send me an invite!

    Lots of love,


    Rufus signature

    It’s your turn. Do you know of any other requirements or recent changes to the law that are relevant here? Please leave them in the comments section below!

    4 comments on “Mexico Marriage Requirements

      • Erica,

        I’m not sure about the nuances of gay marriage in Mexico, but I do know that it is legal here.

        Because of the recent legislative changes that have taken place around the world in regard to gay marriage, I feel inadequate answering your question. In addition to the marriage certificate that would be issued here, you must also consider whether that certificate will be honored in the country that you will be returning to upon the completion of your vacation.

        I would strongly recommend contacting Erica by filling out the form in the blue box above. She is very experienced in all things marriage and can likely help you plan your gay marriage here if you are so inclined.

        Take care,


    1. Can ordained ministers do a renewal of vow in Mexico? Do they need special certifications to do the ceremony in Mexico?

      • Anna,

        I’m not 100% sure what the necessary qualifications are to do a renewal of vows. However, I do know that a renewal of vows is a non-legally binding ceremony. It is not a marriage, a divorce, or anything in between. It is simply a ceremony bases around a promise.

        However, because I am not 100% sure about laws regarding beach ceremonies, I am going to forward your message to my wedding planner who knows EVERYTHING about both Playa Del Carmen weddings and weddings in Mexico in general.

        You will receive an email from both her and I shortly.

        Lots of love,


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