How to Get Married in Costa Rica | Costa Rica Wedding Photographers

Now here’s a question we get asked a ton! How to get married in Costa Rica? Most of our couples who choose Costa Rica for their destination wedding are coming from all over the world! We’ve worked with couples from the US and Europe in the last few years.

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Whether we’re in New England or in Costa Rica, most of our couples are coming from away. They’re putting a lot of faith in their vendors to make their day amazing before they’ve even stepped foot in the country! As Costa Rica wedding photographers our job is to not only provide you with amazing images, but also help out as much as we can along the way.

There are a few different options for getting married in Costa Rica you may want to take into consideration!

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1) Pick a location and date! That’s super important! Even if it’s just the two of you coming into the country for an intimate elopement, you’ll need to know where you’re going and when!

2) Hire a planner. If you’re planning on bringing in guests and having a small to large wedding we highly recommend hiring a wedding planner. Your wedding planner is going to help you out with EVERYTHING. Especially if you don’t speak spanish, they’re going to help extend the branch between you and your venue, florist, hair and make up artist, photographer, officiant, etc.

3) If you’re planning a civil marriage:
You will need a valid ID which can be your cedula (Costa Rican identification card) or passport with a stamp permiting you to be in the country. 

If you will be applying for residency you will need to bring your birth certificate, among other official documents (see instructions in residency section).

A sworn statement notarized in Costa Rica that you are not currently married in any other country. If you have been married before you will need to present divorce papers or a death certificate of your previous spouse. 

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You will need to give your lawyer the following information at least 7 days in advance of the wedding so that he/she may prepare the data in their protocol book for the date: full names, parents names & nationalities, birth place, nationality, identification number, profession, and address. You can also provide a phone number and email address. 

You will also need to provide two witnesses and all of their information. Technically, the witnesses are not allowed to be family, they should be third party witnesses like friends.

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Then on your wedding day you, your new spouse, and your two witnesses will sign this book. The lawyer/notary will then register this information at the Civil Registry which takes about 3 months to process before the official marriage certificate is ready.

If you are in a hurry, a rush option is available for an additional fee. In this case, the certificate is ready in about 10-12 business days. To have your marriage recognized in your home country you need to have the certificate:

  • Translated into English by an Official Translator accredited by the Ministry of Foreign Relations

  • Authenticated by the Ministry of Foreign Relations.

  • Notarized by a Notary.

  • Certified and signed by your embassy's Consular Section.

You can have the certificate mailed via Fed Ex to you after the above process. Once the certificate is received, it must be registered in the city of residence of the couple at the local City Hall.

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Brittany and Dean of Two Adventurous Souls are creative Costa Rica Wedding Photographers up and down the west coast and inland. If you’re interested in chatting with us about your wedding please reach out