Getting Married in Spain
Have you ever thought about getting married in Spain ?
Its easier than you think with the right help and direction.
Here in Spain there is a lot of paperwork involved for anything and a wedding in no exception…..it has a lot of different rules and regulations for many things but as a guide the law regarding a wedding here in Spain is pretty much set by each individual Town hall and can even vary within the same province. Rules change frequently so it is always advisable to seek professional help.
There are 3 types of wedding here in Spain and there is a guide below to each option….so you can choose what suits yourself.
- Legal Civil Wedding
- Catholic Church Wedding
- Civil Wedding Blessing
In order to have a Legal Civil Marriage here in Spain the paperwork must be started well in advance of your preferred wedding date. It can take anything from 4 – 12 months depending on which Town hall the paperwork is being processed at.
The couple have to be residents, on the Padron and have an NIE number and a Spanish Social Security Number and have lived in Spain and been on the padron for at least 2 years. The rules vary according to the area, there is not a standard throughout Spain.
Along side this you would also have to provide various certificates from the British consulate in Alicante and translated UK documents. (Please contact us for more information on what paperwork is required)
Almost all Civil weddings take place at the local Town Hall rather than at a venue.
A Legal Catholic Church Wedding is possible for NON RESIDENTS of Spain. As long as 1 of the couple is baptised and confirmed as Catholic then you can legally marry in the church here in Spain.
A full wedding file would need to be completed in your local Parish at home alongside your local Priest – we would guide you through what is required within that file. Then once it arrives in Spain we would do all the paperwork here on your behalf. Its a simple as that. We would then also do all the required paperwork at the local Registro Civil to make sure the wedding is registered with the local Town hall as well as the catholic Church.
All paperwork submitted for a Catholic Church wedding has a 6 month validity and 3 month for the civil papers. So the time line in which your wedding file is submitted is important. But we would guide you through this.
Please be aware that there are many people who will tell you that your marriage is legal and it is not so, if anything happens to you (death of your spouse for instance) you will find yourself with numerous problems, so please follow the letter of the law and be safe. Legal marriages can only be performed at certain locations.
The other option and the one that most couples opt for is to get legally married in their homeland at a civil ceremony 10 minutes in a registry office, you can just sign the documents you don’t even have to exchange rings and tell anyone, anyone can act as a witness for this.
A Civil Wedding Blessing is the most popular option for couples coming to Spain to get married or even people that live here in Spain as it is far less complicated and you can choose the venue and it can be a lot more flexible.
A wedding blessing can take the form of a legal civil ceremony ( Guests attending will not know it is not the real thing ) – but it is NOT legally binding and the couple must do the legal side either before they come to Spain or when they get home at their local register office or Gibraltar.
The ceremony is personalised just for you and you can incorporate as much or as little as you want. Vows, Promises, exchange of rings and even the Spanish civil code which is a legal requirement in any legal Spanish wedding.
Other Options – For Residents of Spain and for couples that do not want to do all the paper work then the easiest option for them is to be legally married by either returning to the UK if they have an address or making the trip to Gibraltar and getting married under UK Law. We can guide you and help you with a wedding in Gibraltar if required.
You have to attend the office in Gibraltar at least 24 hours prior to the wedding day and provide all the original copies of the documents that have been previously emailed to Gibraltar.
If you decide that Spain is where you want your wedding then please feel free to get in touch with us with any questions and we will get back to you as soon as possible. (contact form below) As we would be fully up to date with the law and requirements.
We also have extensive knowledge of Wedding venues and services and help you create your dream wedding here in Spain.
Benidorm has many places and venues for weddings as do the surrounding areas which are stunning. We can do weddings from as little as 2 people to 200 people……We work with each couple and their budget. It is a very popular area to have a wedding as it offers something for most couples and dates and venues do get booked up in advance. So always book early especially if you have a set date in mind.
Whatever you may have seen in various programmes regarding weddings in Benidorm, the “ Benidorm “ series was one, where a wedding was filmed and broadcast, this is fiction and for TV only. It is not possible for ceremonies to be conducted on any of Benidorm´s five beaches, the town council does not allow it. There are however beaches that can be used for ceremonies but not in Benidorm.
If you wish to receive more information in confidence, contact LindyLoo in Spain