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As a foreigner looking to get married in Malaga, Spain, your first question might be “How do we register the marriage?”. Let’s look together at the types of marriages available under the Spanish law.

Civil marriage in Malaga

If you’re looking for a wedding that doesn’t involve any religious aspects, then a civil marriage might be the perfect option for you! This type of ceremony is performed by a notary or at the town hall or Civil Registry Office and it is legally recognized throughout Spain.

One of the great things about civil marriage is that you have the flexibility to personalize your ceremony to your liking, as long as it complies with the legal requirements. You can choose your own vows, music, readings and more. Plus, there’s no need to worry about any specific religious or cultural requirements.

However, keep in mind that there are some legal requirements you must meet to have a civil wedding in Spain. For example, you must provide certain documents such as your passports, birth certificates and a certificate of residency. Also, proof that you are legally allowed to get married (a so-called certificate of no impediment, which can be obtained at the Embassy or Consulate of your country of residence). 

These requirements may vary depending on your nationality and place of residence, so it’s important to do your research and prepare ahead of time. Overall, a civil marriage is a great option for couples who want a simple, customizable, and legally recognized wedding in Spain.

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Religious Marriage in Malaga

If you are planning a religious wedding in Spain, you have the freedom to choose your preferred faith, whether you’re Catholic, Protestant, Jewish or Muslim. The good news is that you don’t need to have a civil ceremony before your religious ceremony, as it’s not a legal requirement in Spain.

Nevertheless, it’s important to note that there are some legal requirements that need to be fulfilled before the religious ceremony can take place. For instance, you’ll need to provide the necessary documents such as your passport, birth certificate and a certificate of no impediment (certificado de capacidad matrimonial) from your home country’s consulate. These documents must be translated into Spanish and legalized by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Another important detail to keep in mind is that some religious institutions require you to complete a pre-marriage course or counseling before the wedding. This is to ensure that you understand the religious significance of the ceremony and that you’re both committed to the union. For a Catholic wedding, both parties need to provide proof of their religious background, certificate of baptism and pre-nuptial enquiry.

Civil partnership in Malaga

Civil partnership, also known as pareja de hecho in Spain, is a legal union between two individuals who live together and have a stable relationship. This type of marriage is an alternative option for those who don’t want to go for a full-blown wedding.

It’s important to note that Spain doesn’t have a unique regulation for civil partnership and each Autonomous Community regulates it directly. Therefore, it’s crucial to check the specific regulations of the region where you want to register your partnership. It’s worth mentioning that a civil partnership registered in Andalusia may not be available in other parts of the country.

It’s important to take into account that, in some regions, you need to have been living together for a certain period before you can register your civil partnership. Additionally, some Autonomous Communities have limitations on who can register for civil partnerships. For example, some regions only allow opposite-sex couples to register, while others permit same-sex couples as well.

Despite the variations in regulations, registering for a civil partnership in Spain provides several benefits, including inheritance rights, healthcare coverage, and tax benefits. It’s always a good idea to seek legal advice to understand the specific regulations of your region and to make sure you meet all the requirements before registering for a civil partnership.

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LGBTQ+ marriage in Malaga

Love knows no boundaries, and in Spain, same-sex couples have the right to get married or register a civil partnership. So, if you are part of the LGBTQ+ community and planning a wedding in Málaga, you are in luck!

A same-sex wedding in Malaga can be celebrated just like any other wedding. Couples can choose between a civil marriage or a civil partnership, both of which are legal unions recognized by Spanish law. The process is similar to that of a traditional wedding, with a few specific requirements for the paperwork.

It’s worth noting that a same-sex marriage registered in Spain may not be recognized in some countries where such marriages are prohibited. However, this shouldn’t deter you from having the wedding of your dreams in Malaga, with its perfect beaches, classy venues and vibrant culture.

Malaga Province is a welcoming and inclusive destination, with a thriving LGBTQ+ community and a range of wedding providers and venues that cater specifically to same-sex couples.

If you’re considering getting married in Malaga, we encourage you to reach out to us!

Symbolic wedding in Malaga

A symbolic ceremony can be a perfect option for couples who want to have a meaningful and personalized wedding ceremony in Malaga, without the legal requirements and restrictions. Unlike a civil or religious ceremony, a symbolic ceremony doesn’t require any paperwork or legal procedures, so you can have it anywhere you want and with any style you prefer.

One of the advantages of a symbolic ceremony is the flexibility and creativity it offers. You can choose any location in Malaga that speaks to you and fits your wedding vision – from a scenic beach, a charming garden to a romantic castle or villa. You can also customize the ceremony with your own vows, readings, music and rituals to reflect your love story and personalities.

Moreover, a symbolic ceremony allows you to invite anyone you want to officiate your ceremony – it can be a friend, a family member, or a professional celebrant who specializes in creating personalized ceremonies. You can also involve your loved ones in the ceremony, such as having them read a poem, light a candle, or perform a unity ritual.

Another benefit of a symbolic ceremony is that you can have it at any time of the year, regardless of the season or the weather conditions. Malaga enjoys mild and sunny weather throughout the year, which makes it an ideal destination for a symbolic ceremony in any season.

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Final thoughts

If you’re an expat looking to get married in Malaga, there are a few important documents that you’ll need to have in order to comply with the local requirements. Here’s what you’ll need for your wedding (not for the symbolic ceremony, which can be done without restrictions):

  • A valid passport
  • An original birth certificate
  • A certificate of no impediment

Make sure to gather all of these documents well in advance of your wedding date, as the process of obtaining them can take some time. Having these papers in order will ensure that your wedding goes smoothly and that you can focus on enjoying your special day in beautiful Malaga!