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Marriage, Separation and Divorce in Spain

Marriage, Separation and Divorce in Spain

1.1 Marriage in Spain

Civil and religious (Roman Catholic, Jewish, Muslim and Protestant) marriages between foreigners and a foreign and a Spanish national can be celebrated in Spain. For a religious marriage, one of the parties must be legally resident in Spain. For Civil marriages, however, we understand that the process can be started in the U.K. via the Spanish Consulate General in London, and may take up to three months to complete the necessary paperwork.

When marrying a Spaniard in Spain, you can choose between a religious ceremony or a civil ceremony. Before the wedding you have to show proof of identity, and proof that you are not currently married. The process of getting married starts with edictos (initial announcements of the wedding). If no one presents proof to the contrary, the ceremony can take place about 20 days later. After the ceremony, you have to REGISTER IN THE REGISTRO CIVIL, where the Spanish government will give you a LIBRO DE FAMILIA. This is the universal proof of your matrimony and of the children that you have, as well as other family conditions. Don't forget to report your wedding at your own country's Embassy or Consulate, especially if you are planning to go back to your country.

If you are married outside of Spain and one of the spouses is a Spanish citizen or legal resident (that is, with a NIE). THE NON-SPANISH SPOUSE DOES NOT AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE SPANISH NATIONALITY . This person can get a reagrupación familiar visa before going to Spain. Once they are in Spain, the application process for the NIE will be easier. It will also take less time if they want to become a Spanish citizen. After the wedding, the Spanish citizen has to report the matrimony to the Spanish Embassy or Consulate, so it can be registered and validated in Spain. The Spanish Embassy or Consulate then gives you the LIBRO DE FAMILIA.

 

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