Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Your Costa Rica wedding will be registered with the civil registry of Costa Rica and can be registered with the embassy of your home country. Costa Rica marriages are legal all over the world and are internationally recognized.

There is not a lot of information that is required by the Costa Rica lawyer, just the basics. The full and complete name of the bride and groom, as well as their occupations, current address, passport number and nationality, date and place of birth, marital status, and the full names and nationalities of both mothers and fathers. If the marital status of either party is divorced it is important to include the date of the divorce, as well as the city, state, and court that decreed the divorce, plus the full and complete name of the ex-spouse. For the name of the mothers of the couple, please include their name as shown on your birth certificate. The mailing address that you provide will be the address where the final documents will be sent, and this must be a street address. P.O. Boxes cannot be used as there needs to be a signature showing the package was received.

Foreign visitors who come to Costa Rica for a tropical wedding will need a passport for identification. Foreign driver's licenses, state or other country identification cards, and social security cards are not acceptable forms of identification. A passport is the only form of identification that is needed or accepted for the Costa Rica marriage requirements. For a Costa Rica citizen they only need their identificatin card. This means that you do not need to supply any notarized documents, which makes it much easier.

It is a good idea to give at least ten days of notice to the Costa Rica lawyer, and usually more time is preferred to guarantee the correct documents are prepared or acquired. Normally it is ideal to start working with your Costa Rica wedding planner at least two weeks ahead of time, preferably three weeks in advance.

In the country of Costa Rica, you must have an attorney perform the wedding and file the necessary documentation with the Civil Registry.

Normally the couple will provide two family members or two friends to act as the witnesses, but our law office can supply witnesses if you choose not to have friends or family as witnesses. The specific requirement as to who can be a witness under Costa Rica marriage laws is that any witness must be at least eighteen years old.

There is no length of stay requirement before you can have a Costa Rica marriage. You can be married at any time after you enter the country.

It takes approximately four to six weeks before the Certificate of Marriage is processed and issued. The Costa Rica marriage must be registered with the Costa Rican Civil Registry to be internationally recognized, and it takes time for the marriage to be registered on their books. Then the certificate must be translated and authenticated by the State Department. The certificate is then sent to the couple by courier or certified mail. The last step is for the couple to register the Certificate of marriage with their city, town, or municipality.

If you have questions that have not been answered, please contact us at and we will be happy to help you. If you prefer to contact us by phone please call 1-800-378-7542 in the United States or Canada, and +(506) 2224-2800 in all other countries. To contact us by fax please send your inquiry to +(506) 2225-2909. The Meléndez and Bonilla Law Firm has helped numerous clients make their dream of a tropical wedding come true. We are available to answer any questions you may have, and to help make this memorable day a very special time without any hassles. Why wait. Contact us and let us make your tropical wedding an event to remember.