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Marrying in Peru

Marrying in Peru

A guide to tying the knot in Peru

You are planning to marry in Peru? First, “Congratulations”! Tying the knot in Peru is a simple and easy process, at least if you have a general understanding about the process and, in case a foreigner is involved, have all the necessary documents on hand.

And as with all bureaucratic processes in Peru, expect a delay here and there, some running around and the one or other frustrating day before you finally can say “I do”. To make the entire process easier and smoother for you, find below a detailed overview of what it involves in getting married in Peru.

 

Overview

 

Civil Wedding in Peru

Only civil ceremonies are legal in Peru. So, if you plan to wed in church, have a romantic celebration on the beach, the blessing of a Shaman, an adventure wedding or whatever, you first have to get legally married.

The civil ceremony can be performed either in the registry office of a municipality or, since December 2022, as well at a public notary.

Be aware that at least one partner has to be Peruvian or a legal resident of Peru.

Additionally, most municipalities and notaries request that at least one partner lives in the municipality, where the wedding takes place, or in the jurisdiction of the notary.

Furthermore, to this day, the Peruvian Constitution defines marriage as a stable union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages or civil unions are not possible in Peru.

Getting married in the registry office of a municipality

Even though, since December 2022, notarial marriages are an option, the most common place to get married in Peru is still the registry office of the municipality, where at least one partner lives.

As regulations change quickly in Peru and necessary documents and especially processes may vary slightly from municipality to municipality, the first step on your way to marriage is to check the exact requirements with the municipality where you plan to marry. So, when you submit your paperwork, all your documents are in order and, especially important for foreigners, no surprises come up that may delay your special day for weeks or even months.

To give you an overview about the general requirements, here a list of documents usually required.

Requirements for getting married in the registry office of a municipality in Peru

List of requirements:

  1. Application form
  2. Passport / ID
  3. Birth certificate
  4. Certificate of being free to marry (Certificado de soltería)
  5. Domicile certificate
  6. Medical exam (Certificado médico prenupcial)
  7. Wittnesses
  8. If divorced: divorce certificate
  9. If widowed: death certificate of former spouse

Explanatory notes for the requirements:

1. Application form

The application form includes general information about the bridal couple and the witnesses. The bridal couple has to declare their will to marry before the municipality (usually each municipality has a form letter available).

2. Identification

Peruvians need the original and a readable copy of their up-to-date DNI.

Foreigners must present their passport and a copy. Additionally, some municipalities require proof that you are legally in the country. So, if you are a resident, bring your carné de extranjería including copy; if you are in Peru as a tourist, download and print your TAM virtual (how it's done is explained in our article How many days did I get under subpoint How to check your TAM virtual).

3. Birth certificate

Peruvians must present an original certified copy of their birth certificate (depending on the municipality not issued more than 3 months ago).

Foreigners need an original birth certificate from their home country. Don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru! *

4. Certificado de soltería

The “certificate of being single” is an official document stating that you are single, divorced or widowed, so free to marry.

Depending on the municipality, Peruvians can either provide a so-called “Constancia Negativa de Matrimonio” issued by Reniec or a sworn statement declaring their civil status (you find a sample letter on the government website).

For foreigners, it’s more complicated, as in many countries such a certificate doesn’t exist. So, it’s time to get a little creative.

If you are already in Peru, one option is to ask the municipality where you plan to marry if an affidavit signed in front of a notary in Peru is accepted. If yes, great; just go to the nearest notary and sign (you probably will first need a Permit to sign contracts); problem solved quickly and easily.

If not, another option is to get in contact with the embassy or consulate of your home country in Peru and asked them to either issue a so-called "Certificado Consular de Soltería" or to notarize a sworn statement in which you declare that you are single (unmarried, divorced, widowed). As you are not the first with this problem, many embassies and consulates will do so and are prepared (check with the municipality, if they accept it, most do). Be aware that this document issued by the embassy or consulate must be legalized by the Peruvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and, if not in Spanish, be translated by an official translator.

If the municipality where you plan to marry won’t accept above options and you hopefully have someone back home able to help or if you are still in your home country, check if there are any official government-issued documents in your home country stating your civil status or if any government office can issue a document confirming your civil status.

If these two are a no, you have two options left: sign an affidavit in which you declare that you are single (unmarried, divorced, widowed) in front of a notary public in your home country or ask the authority responsible for issuing marriage certificates in your home country for a copy of your one. If you are unmarried, they won’t find anything and you will have an official paper stating this.

In case you use a document issued abroad, don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru! *

5. Domicile certificate

Most municipalities request that at least one partner lives in the municipality where the wedding takes place.

If one partner is Peruvian for some municipalities, the address on the DNI is enough, others request a sworn statement from a notary and still others ask for a utility bill (electricity, water, phone) including copy.

6. Certificado médico prenupcial

Most municipalities request a medical exam, the so-called certificado médico prenupcial, before they allow you to get married.

Best ask at the municipality which doctor/clinic to use. Both partners have to go together. The medical exam includes a quick general health check, some talk about STIs/STDs and giving a blood sample which is tested for HIV/AIDS and other STIs/STDs. The results and the certificate are usually ready in a day or two.

7. Witnesses

Most municipalities request the presence of two witnesses when submitting the paperwork and the same two witnesses on the day of the ceremony; a few even request two witnesses for the groom and two for the bride.

The witnesses shouldn’t be family members, should know the couple for a longer period of time and have to present an official ID (DNI, passport, carné de extranjería) including copy. As the wedding won’t take place if a witness present when submitting the paperwork doesn’t show up on the big day, choose reliable and trustworthy people.

8. If divorced

Additionally to above-mentioned requirements, most municipalities request some sort of proof that a former marriage was resolved legally. This could be the final judgement of the divorce, a divorce decree, a municipal divorce resolution, or any other official divorce documentation.

Please ask at the municipality where you plan to remarry which documents are required. If these documents were issued outside Peru, don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru.*

Be aware that some municipalities have a waiting period before divorcees can remarry. Some municipalities as well request a pregnancy test from women who want to get remarried within less than 300 days of their divorce.

9. If widowed

Usually only the death certificate of the former spouse is requested, but some municipalities as well ask for the former marriage certificate.

So, to be on the safe side, please ask at the municipality where you plan to remarry which documents are required. If these documents were issued outside Peru, don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru.*

Be aware that some municipalities request a pregnancy test from women who want to get remarried within less than 300 days of the death of their former spouse.

 * Any foreign document used in Peru

All foreign documents need an Apostille or, if the country in which they were issued didn't sign the Apostille Convention have to be legalized by a Peruvian consulate abroad and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Peru.

Additionally, all documents, apostilled or legalized, have to be translated into Spanish by a certified translator in Peru, a so-called traductor publico juramentado, in case they are not solely in Spanish! You find lists of these government-approved translators on the Peruvian government website. Just click under point 3 on the language of your original document and the list of translators for your language appears. The translation then has to be legalized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (RREE) in Lima or a RREE branch in the provinces.

Additionally, documents in Peru have an “expiration date”. So, in general (there are a few exceptions), documents issued in Peru are usually only accepted if they were issued not more than 3 months before they are presented; documents issued outside Peru are only accepted if they are not older than 6 months.

Application process for getting married in the registry office of a municipality in Peru

As soon as you have all the paperwork together, the worst part is over and you can relax a bit.

The next step is to submit all documents to the municipality (don’t forget to bring your witnesses), pay the fee for the ceremony and choose the day for your wedding (after submitting the paperwork there usually is a waiting period of at least a week or two until you can marry; be aware that in case the municipality is busy, the next free date might even be 2 or 3 months away). You can as well choose if the civil ceremony should take place in the municipal building or if the official should come to a special location to perform the ceremony (extra costs involved). Most municipalities then request that the bridal couple publishes a marriage announcement in a local newspaper and submit the entire page with the marriage announcement as soon as it's published.

You are nearly done. The last step to get legally married in Peru is the civil ceremony itself. As in most countries around the globe, it’s usually nothing spectacular or super festive; a private affair mostly celebrated only with the closest family members and best friends. The ceremony might take around 20 to 30 minutes. The official performing the ceremony might talk about marriage as the union of two persons, the legal responsibilities that come with it, the rights and obligations of the spouses or similar. The only things for you to do are listening, saying “Si, quiero” or “Si, acepto” at the right moment, otherwise all your hard work of the last weeks or months would have been in vain, and signing the marriage certificate (if you are in Peru as a tourist when you marry, the municipality may request that you have a Permit to sign contracts allowing you to sign legally binding documents including your marriage certificate).

Congratulations! You made it and are now legally married in Peru.

After the ceremony, there usually is only a small lunch or private reception with close family members and best friends. Only if the couple doesn’t have a religious wedding later, the big celebration follows (see below under Wedding reception).

Don’t forget to register your marriage with Reniec. Once the marriage is registered Peruvians have to change their marital status on their DNI. And, if applicable, foreigners should as well register their marriage with the embassy or consulate of your home country in Peru.

Getting married at a public notary

Next to getting married in the registry office of a municipality, since December 2022, couples as well can tie the knot at a notary public in Peru. This applies to Peruvian-Peruvian couples. Peruvian-foreign resident/foreigner couples and to foreign resident-foreigner couples.

Generally, the requirements are the same, however, they seem clearer and the whole process seems to be much more straightforward, making it a lot quicker. So, while taking the big step at a notary doesn’t seem to be very romantic, if you are pressed for time or have problems with a municipality, considering getting married at a notary could be an option.

Nevertheless, as documents and especially the process vary a bit from notary to notary, best check the exact requirements with the notary where you plan to marry to avoid any surprises when you submit your paperwork and consequently lengthy delays.

To give you an overview about the general requirements, here a list of documents usually required.

Requirements for getting married at a public notary in Peru

List of requirements:

  1. Application form
  2. Passport / ID
  3. Birth certificate
  4. Certificate of being free to marry (Certificado de soltería)
  5. Domicile certificate
  6. Medical exam (Certificado médico prenupcial)
  7. Wittnesses
  8. If divorced: divorce certificate
  9. If widowed: death certificate of former spouse

Explanatory notes for the requirements:

1. Application form

The application form includes general information about the bridal couple and the witnesses. You get the form letter at the notary.

2. Identification

Peruvians need the original and a readable copy of their up-to-date DNI.

Foreigners must present their passport and a copy. Additionally, notaries require a proof that you are legally in the country. So, if you are a resident, bring your carné de extranjería including copy; if you are in Peru as a tourist, download and print your TAM virtual (how it's done is explained in our article How many days did I get under subpoint How to check your TAM virtual).

3. Birth certificate

Peruvians must present an original certified copy of their birth certificate (not older than 3 months).

Foreigners need an original birth certificate from their home country. Don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru! *

4. Certificado de soltería

The “certificate of being single” is an official document stating that you are single, divorced or widowed, so free to marry.

Depending on the notary, Peruvians can either provide a so-called “Constancia Negativa de Matrimonio” issued by Reniec or a so-called "Declaración Jurada de Estado Civil", so a sworn statement declaring their civil status (you find a sample letter on the government website).

For foreigners, getting the certificate of being single from their home country can be a mission as in many countries such a document doesn’t exist. While municipalities randomly accept (or often not) a "subsitute" document as long as it's an offical document stating that the person is free to marry, notaries seem to have clearer rules, which can be an advantage or disadvantage. Most require either an official document from your home country stating that you are single (free to marry) or a Certificado Consular de Soltería.

So, best check first if there are any official government-issued documents in your home country stating your civil status or if any authority in your home country can issue a document confirming that you are single (free to marry). If so, have it issued and don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru! *

If not, get in contact with the embassy or consulate of your home country in Peru and asked them to issue a so-called "Certificado Consular de Soltería".  As you are not the first with this problem, many embassies and consulates will do so and are prepared. Be aware that this document issued by the embassy or consulate must be legalized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and, if not in Spanish, be translated by an official translator.

In case your embassy or consulate isn't able or willing to issue this certificate, talk to the notary if a "Declaración Jurada de Estado Civil", so a sworn statement is accepted.

5. Domicile certificate

Both partners must present a Declaracion jurada de domicilio, so a sworn statement confirming where they live. Sometimes instead or additionally a "recibo", so a electricity, water or phone bill is required.

6. Certificado médico prenupcial

Both partners must get a medical exam and submit the so-called "Certificado médico prenupcial" and the "Constancia de consejería de enfermedades de transmisión sexual", which usually is just one document. It can't be older than 30 days. You can get this done at any private or public clinic/hospital. If you are not sure which to use, best ask the notary for recommendations.

The medical exam includes a quick general health check and giving a blood sample which is tested for HIV/AIDS and other STIs/STDs. Additionally, expect to listen to a talk about STIs/STDs. The results and the certificate are usually ready in a day or two.

7. Witnesses

Most notaries request two witnesses; a few two witnesses for the groom and two for the bride, however, then the two for the groom can be the same as the two for the bride.

The witnesses shouldn’t be family members and should know the couple for a while. They must present an official ID (DNI, passport, carné de extranjería) including copy. Addtionally, the witnesses must sign a sworn statement in which they declare that they are not aware of any impediment to marriage.

8. If divorced

Additionally to above-mentioned requirements, notaries request the marriage certificate of a previous marriage together with some sort of proof that is was resolved legally. This could be the final judgement of the divorce, a divorce decree, a municipal divorce resolution, or any other official divorce documentation.

Please ask the notary where you plan to remarry which documents are required. If these documents were issued outside Peru, don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru.*

In case women want to get remarried within less than 300 days of their divorce, a negative pregnancy test issued by a doctor must be presented.

9. If widowed

Additionally to above-mentioned requirements, notaries usually request the marriage certificate of the previous marriage and the death certificate of the late spouse.

If these documents were issued outside Peru, don't miss the explanatory note for the usage of foreign documents in Peru.*

In case women want to get remarried within less than 300 days of the death of their former spouse  a negative pregnancy test issued by a doctor must be presented.

* Any foreign document used in Peru

All foreign documents need an Apostille or, if the country in which they were issued didn't sign the Apostille Convention have to be legalized by a Peruvian consulate abroad and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Peru.

Additionally, all documents, apostilled or legalized, have to be translated into Spanish by a certified translator in Peru, a so-called traductor publico juramentado, in case they are not solely in Spanish! You find lists of these government-approved translators on the Peruvian government website. Just click under point 3 on the language of your original document and the list of translators for your language appears. The translation then has to be legalized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (RREE) in Lima or a RREE branch in the provinces.

Additionally, documents in Peru have an “expiration date”. So, in general (there are a few exceptions), documents issued in Peru are usually only accepted if they were issued not more than 3 months before they are presented; documents issued outside Peru are only accepted if they are not older than 6 months.

Application process for getting married at a public notary in Peru

The process of tying the knot at a Peruvian notary is similar to getting married in a registry office of a municipality as explained above, however often quicker, clearer and more organzied.

The most important part is that you have all required documents in order. Once this is done, you just must submit all documents to the notary, pay the fee for the ceremony and choose the day for your wedding. Usually, notaries are more flexible than municipalities, so here you can save lots of time.

Most notaries request that a wedding announcement is put up in the notary and that the bridal couple publishes a marriage announcement in a local newspaper and submit the entire page with the marriage announcement as soon as it's published.

You are nearly done. The last step to getting legally married in Peru is the ceremony itself. As in most countries around the globe, it’s usually nothing spectacular or super festive; a private affair mostly celebrated only with the closest family members and best friends. The ceremony might take around 20 to 30 minutes.

The notary performing the ceremony might talk about marriage as the union of two persons, the legal responsibilities that come with it, the rights and obligations of the spouses or similar. The only things for you to do are listening, saying “Si, quiero” or “Si, acepto” at the right moment, otherwise all your hard work of the last weeks or months would have been in vain, and signing the marriage certificate (if you are in Peru as a tourist when you marry, the notary may request that you have a Permit to sign contracts allowing you to sign legally binding documents including your marriage certificate).

Congratulations! You made it and are now legally married in Peru.

After the ceremony, there usually is only a small lunch or private reception with close family members and best friends. Only if the couple doesn’t have a religious wedding later, the big celebration follows (see below under Wedding reception).

Once you are married, you must register your marriage with Reniec. Once the marriage is registered you get the official Peruvian marriage certificate. Additionally, Peruvians have to change their marital status on their DNI. And, if applicable, foreigners should as well register their marriage with the embassy or consulate of your home country in Peru.

 

Religious Wedding in Peru

As already mentioned above, you can only be legally married in a civil wedding. A religious wedding is optional and can only be held after the civil ceremony. Nevertheless, the religious wedding is a huge affair in Peru and most couples decide to give their vows in front of God, the extended family and friends in a church as well.

Each religion has its own requirements to marry in church, but as over 80% of Peruvians are catholic, here a general overview of the requirements for a catholic wedding in Peru. For exact requirements, please get in contact with the corresponding congregation.

  • ID (DNI for Peruvians, passport or carné de extranjería for foreigners)
  • Birth certificate
  • Baptismal certificate (legalized by the ecclesiastical notary of the Archdiocese)
  • Certificate of Confirmation (legalized by the ecclesiastical notary of the Archdiocese)
  • Religious pre-marriage counselling
  • 4 witnesses (2 for the groom, 2 for the bride), can’t be family
  • Official marriage certificate or proof that the civil ceremony is arranged and held before the religious
  • “La proclamación” (public announcement of the upcoming religious wedding either during the Sunday mass or in the church magazine or on the notice board of the parish)
  • Fee or donation

While for the civil ceremony you are in most cases bound to the registry office of the municipality or a notary where at least one partner of the bridal couple lives, the religious ceremony can usually take place in whatever church you choose. However, entering marriage in the presence of God in popular churches or even impressive cathedrals might come with a waiting period of several months and an elevated price tag. You should as well consider that you have to transport your wedding party to the church, then to the reception venue and back home.

 

Wedding Reception in Peru

The religious ceremony is followed by a huge reception at the most beautiful or prestigious venues the couple or their parents can afford. It often includes lots of delicious food and an open bar, wedding cake, photographer, music and dancing, an entertainment program with professional dancers or animators, for example, and party games; so generally, a large night-long celebration.

Most couples hire a wedding planner to organize everything or book a special wedding package, which often includes a catering and event planning service at one of the countless hotels or clubs. But honestly, it’s not rocket science to organize it (partly) on your own and if you shop around, save some bucks along the way. This brings us to the costs of a wedding in Peru.

 

Wedding costs in Peru

As everywhere around the globe, you can celebrate a beautiful and memorable wedding on a budget, but as well spend tens of thousands of dollars for a luxury event.

Depending on the type of wedding (only civil ceremony with a small or large reception, religious ceremony in Lima’s cathedral with huge reception, destination wedding, adventure wedding,…), chosen venue (garden of your in-laws or 5 star luxury hotel), number of guests (0 or 250), self-planning or wedding planner, home-cooked food or exclusive caterer and other choices such as dress/suit, rings, decoration and flowers, photographer, music and entertainment, necessary transport and accommodation costs and all the other little expenses, you can spend a few thousand or tens of thousands. The sky or better the budget you are willing to spend, your or your parents’ financial resources, savings or limit of the credit card is the limit.

The largest investment of a wedding in Peru is usually the venue of the reception, catering, and decoration. But other important though most often smaller expenses such as invitations, dress, ring, make-up, hairstyle, flowers, music, entertainment, cake, photographer, car and transport add up quickly and shouldn’t be forgotten.

So generally, the overall costs for a nice, average wedding in Peru with 50 to 100 guests is around US$ 8,000 to US$ 10,000. You can do it for less, but as well more if you add the one or other “luxury”. Average larger weddings (100-200 guests) with more luxury might set you back US$ 15,000 up to US$ 30,000 and huge weddings (over 200 guests) and / or super exclusive events can easily reach up to US$ 50,000.

No matter if you plan a wedding on a budget or an exclusive event, it’s always worth to shop around; the most expensive isn’t always the best.

 

Destination wedding in Peru

Because of its diverse landscapes, countless attractions and rich historic and cultural past Peru offers a wide range of wedding or vow renewal options for everyone: from a religious ceremony in one of the many impressive churches, to a romantic ceremony on the beach, to a rustic ceremony at a private hacienda or bodega, to a traditional Andean ceremony with a Shaman in the Sacred Valley, to an exclusive ceremony in one of the numerous luxury hotels, to an exotic ceremony in the jungle, to an adventure event around Machu Picchu or on the Amazon River…

All the above options are only symbolic ceremonies. So, couples usually first marry officially in their home country (or, if at least one partner is a legal resident of Peru, at the registry office of a municipality or a notary in Peru) and then “elope” to one of the most stunning places in Peru for a once in a lifetime experience.

 

Same-sex marriage and civil union in Peru

To this day, the Peruvian Constitution defines marriage as a stable union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages or civil unions are not possible in Peru and same-sex marriages performed abroad aren’t recognized.

And even though prominent gay representatives are already pushing for years for a new legislation that would allow same-sex couples to wed and even the one or other judge ruled in favor of gay couples fighting for their right to marry or to have their foreign marriage recognized, the conservative voices in Peru’s Congress, the powerful Roman Catholic Church and other government institutions until now successfully prevented such a thing.

When in January 2018 the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in Costa Rica ruled that countries in the region that signed the American Convention on Human Rights (which Peru has) should legalize same-sex marriages or unions, supporting marriage equality in Latin American countries, the hopes were high that Peru finally had to act. A law change was expected in a reasonable timeframe, but unfortunately until today nothing of the kind happened.

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  • This commment is unpublished.
    Daniel Bloomfield · 12/06/2024
    Hi. I'm actually going to get married in Peru after living there for 5 years with my Peruvian girlfriend. I'm on a work visa - which required a criminal/interpol check when I applied. I noticed in your article about getting married in Peru, you did not mention a criminal background check - however someone else told me it's necessary to get married. Is it? Even if I already did it to get my carnet extranjera? Thank you!
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 12/06/2024
      @Daniel Bloomfield
      Hello Daniel,

      I don't know who this someone is, but no, you usually do not need a criminal record check to get married in Peru. It's not on the official requirement list and is - as far as I know - never required by a municipality or a notary.

      However, you will need a current criminal record check if you want to apply for the family visa after getting married, so if you plan to make a cambio de calidad migratoria in your case from trabajador to familiar then you will need among other requirements,  which are listed in our extensive Family Visa article, a new criminal record check with Apostille and a new Ficha de Canje from Interpol.

      All the best.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    robin · 03/06/2024
    Hi Sunflower,

    Thank you soo much for the tips. everything worked perfectly with the steps you said. i did the steps and to be honest. We could have married in less then 2 weeks after ariving.  the city where we married was not the hardest with the papers.  we made of everything 2 copys  in case of but we decied to marry  25th of may. The only thing we where a little bit suprised about was how much taxi did cost for the person that married us in civil way it was around 30 Solos but we had too pay 150. And a good tip for people that marry civil way but not in the city hall. if they say 5 o clock dont expect they will be there 5 the person from the city hall arrived 5:30
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 04/06/2024
      @robin
      Hello Robin,

      Congrats in your marriage! And thanks for sharing your experience.

      I'm happy to hear that for you the process was straightforward and so quick.

      Wishing you two all the best for your life together.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Nick · 28/05/2024
    Hello

    I have a question about the certificate of singleness and the birth certificate. After I get the documents apostilled I was planning on getting a translation done, would I need the translated copies apostilled? 

    Thanks 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 28/05/2024
      @Nick
      Hello Nick,

      you surely won't need another Apostille, but in some rare cases the municipality or notary, where you marry, wants an authentication of the translation from the Peruvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (RREE). You should ask them about the exact (!) requirements.

      But usually an additional authentication is not required. So, if you have an Apostille, which must be done in the country where the document was issued, and a translation from a certified translator in Peru (do not get your documents translated abroad !!!) you should be fine and won't need an additional authentication from RREE.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Mark · 25/03/2024
    Hi Eva,

    Just want to say thank you very much for for your advice. I got married in Lima a week ago in a notary you recommended. I am from Ireland and my Peruvian wife and I are planning on applying for a visa for Ireland. If you know of any other Peruvian Irish couples, please let us know of their experience with visa application 😊? 
    By the way, do you know how long it takes to get a wedding certificate after a marriage? 

    Thanks, 
    Mark 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 25/03/2024
      @Mark
      Hello Mark,

      So good hearing from you again. I'm so happy that getting married at a notary in the end worked out.

      And, of course, congratulations.

      Unfortunately, I don't know any Irish-Peruvian couples. Sorry. Have you tried social media? When I remember correctly, there is a group on Facebook called Irish in Peru. Or try to ask in one of the Expats in Peru groups; probably someone there can share his/her experience.

      Not 100% sure how the notary handled it, but either you got a document (the "acta") with which you must register your marriage at Reniec or the notary forwards the documentation and the marriage is automatically registered.

      Either way, it is better and quicker if you personally register your marriage at Reniec. It depends on the Reniec office, but it can take anything between 10 and 20 business days (or sometimes even longer) until the marriage is registered and your wife can download a certified copy of your Peruvian marriage certificate.

      All the best
      Eva

  • This commment is unpublished.
    Mark · 21/02/2024
    Hi there, my fiancée is Peruvian and I am living in Europe. We are planning to get married in Peru. We already have gone to a well respected notary in Lima, however the notary have let us down. They accepted all of our documentation but refused, for some reason, to confirm a wedding date for us. It is really confusing and we do not understand the behavior of the notary. Anyway, can someone recommend a notary in Lima please? 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 21/02/2024
      @Mark
      Hello Mark,

      that's really strange. Never heard of something like this.

      You said that "for some reason" the notary refuses to confirm a wedding date. What are the reasons? Have you specifically ask why or where the problem is? Maybe you just have to wait a week or two until the publishing period of the Edicto Matrimonial is over? Or one of the documents you submitted isn't in order? Or the notary is on holidays for the next two weeks and no-one in the office can fix a specific date? Or whatever?

      Anyway, I can't recommend any notary but I heard that Jorge Gonzales, Jr. Miller in Lince and Rosalia Mejia, Av. Panama in Barranco are performing many marriages and seem to know what they are doing.

      Wishing you all the best

      Greetings
      Eva
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Mark · 22/02/2024
      @Sunflower Thanks Eva. We will contact one of the Notaries you referenced.
      It seems that the Notary was busy and so could not confirm a date. It is unfortunate because we feel we wasted time waiting for the notary to confirm. Finally, yesterday the notary just told us to go to a different notary. My fiancée and I do not understand why we were just not told this from the start. Surely the notary had a schedule and knew when she was busy originally not busy. Instead, they accepted all of our documentation and kept us waiting. Anyway, we have to move on and look for a new notary. Thank you for your response. 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 22/02/2024
      @Mark
      Unbelievable. As said before, I never heard of something like this. Usually, getting married at a notary is much easier and way quicker than dealing with a municipality.

      Hope with another notary things go smoothly and you can soon get married.

      Greetings
      Eva
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Mark · 23/02/2024
      @Sunflower Thanks again. By the way, I may have to do two visits to Peru within the space of a few months. One visit to submit the marriage documents and a second visit maybe two months later for the ceremony. Is this allowed by the Peru border immigration authorities do you know? I am from ireland.
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 23/02/2024
      @Mark
      Hello Mark,

      if you haven't already stayed in Peru for 183 days over the past 365 days, you shouldn't have a problem.

      And if the immigration officer asks just tell him/her that you visit to submit the documents to get married / to get married to the love of your life. You should be fine.

      All the best
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Natalja · 23/01/2024
    Hello! Maybe you could help me with some information regarding changing last name after getting married? Is it mandatory for a woman to keep her last name as part of her new last name when she gets married? Is it in any way possible to keep her husband's 1st part of the last name only? e.g. she is Maria MENDEZ GARCIA, he is Jose REYNA GONZALEZ. Can she be only Maria REYNA, not Maria MENDEZ GARCIA de REYNA. I'm from Estonia and I'm currently in the process of changing my last name to my husband's last name who is Peruvian (we've been married for 17 years but I kept my maiden name at that time). Now I want to take my husband's last name but only the first part of it. Today I was informed by the Civil Status Office that I'd have to take both of his last names unless in Peru/by Peruvian law it is allowed to keep only 1. If there is any proof that it is allowed in Peru, I'd really appreciate if you could let me know, so I could share this with the Civil Status Office. They have also started a research on their side (don't know how long it would take) but I hope to get some information as soon as I can.
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 24/01/2024
      @Natalja
      Hello Natalja,

      in Peru, women never ever even would consider taking their husband's last name. They keep their first (father's) and second (mother's) last name and if at all add "de" and the their husband's first (father's) last name.

      If you take your husband's first last name you are considered his half-sister (farther the same but mother unknown as you don't have a second last name); if you take both of your husband's names you are considered his sister with the same father and mother.

      I'm from Europe and married my Peruvian husband there and was stupid enough to take my husband's first last name as common where I'm from. In Peru, I'm now considered his half sister and had lots of problems getting our marriage registered. And getting the last names of our children sorted out was a nightmare.

      Honestly, if you are planning to move back to Peru I highly recommend keep your name.

      And I don't know, if there is somewhere a regulation or law specifying the name rules for married women in Peru, never heard of it, but as said above, women in Peru keep their names.

      Sorry, I couldn't help.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Steven · 05/12/2023
    Hello!  So I’m planning to get married in January and then apply for a family visa in early March. Do you think that my birth certificate and other documents I’m getting with apostle for my marriage can be used again for my family visa or do they keep these documents after the process is over? I am from the US. 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 06/12/2023
      @Steven
      Hello Steven,

      I highly recommend that you check out our Family visa article and here especially the requirements to apply for a family visa based on being married to a Peruvian.

      The requirements for a family visa application include
      - Passport
      - Criminal record check
      - Peruvian marriage certificate
      - DNI of the Peruvian spouse
      - Interpol clearance

      The requirements for getting married in Peru include
      - Passport
      - Birth certificate
      - Certificate of being single
      - Domicile certificate
      - Medical exam

      I put the documents you need to bring from home in bold letters. Everything else is done in Peru.

      If you compare these two lists, with the exception of the passport not one document needed for getting married in Peru is as well needed to apply for the family visa.

      You don't need your birth certificate for the visa application. The certificate of being single isn't worth anything after you are married and as you want to apply for a family visa based on being married to a Peruvian would be counterproductive. 

      So, not sure what "other documents" you mean.

      Anyway, yes, I think the municipality or notary where you get married will keep the originals of your submitted documents.

      Hope, this was the answer you were looking for

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Mark · 05/12/2023
    Hi there, I realize you have probably answered similar questions before so apologies for asking the same questions again. My girlfriend and I are planning on getting married in Lima. She is Peruvian and I am Irish. She lives in Lima and I live in ireland. So I would be going over on a tourist visa for the marriage. She was told by a notary that I have to be present when submitting all the documentation for the ceremony. After submitting the documentation, we put a notice in a newspaper. We then wait 8 days. After that we can approach the notary again to schedule in a date for the ceremony, which could be maybe 2 weeks later. So, in all, it could be 23 or 24 days that I would need to stay in Lima on a tourist visa. I have to take into account that I need to do the medical appointment also. Based on replies to other questions, it seems I would also need all translations to be done in advance of submitting the documentation. It is not ideal for me to have to spend 24 days in Lima because I need to be in Ireland to work.
    My question is, do you think this is the standard time period for a notary? I assume getting married in a municipality would be longer?
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 05/12/2023
      @Mark
      Hello Mark,

      the option to get married at a notary is just available for less than a year. So, honestly, I don't have lots of information about the usual time frame.

      But I know of one couple, she as well Peruvian and he British, who managed to get married within 12 days of his arrival in Peru. However, these two were super organized and seemingly had a notary that was quick, efficient and willing to help. So, nothing you would expect from every notary in Peru.

      Before he came to Peru, he already sent all documents with a courier service to his fiancee, who already did the translations, pre-arranged everything with the notary and made an appointment for the medical exam before he arrived. Then a day after his arrival they went together for the medical exam and to the notary to submit all documents. After that they had to publish the announcement in a newspaper, which she had pre-arranged as well so it would be printed just a day after their visit to the notary and returned to the notary with a printed copy of it. Then they had to wait one week and their wedding date (as well pre-arranged) was a day later.

      As said before all this was only possible because the fiancee arranged everything before her soon-to-be-husband arrived in Peru and because they were lucky to have found a notary who was willing to make it happen in a short time frame.

      I know another couple who managed to get married at a notary within 20 days of the arrival of the foreign partner. As well everything was pre-arranged, however they could only get their wedding date after they showed the announcement.

      Probably your fiancee could ask around at other notaries and check if they are more flexible. Or she could as well try at the municipality. I know many couples who got married there within 3 weeks as the staff was willing to accept, for example, the submission of the documents with only one partner being present, or they allowed to already make the appointment for the wedding before the other partner arrived; or they gave an exact plan what must happen when so planning was easy. But here as well it all depends on the person who is in charge, if he/she is willing, flexible enough and feels comfortable to make your wedding happen as quickly as possible.

      Sorry, I can't give you better news.

      Wishing you and your fiancee all the best.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Lex · 01/11/2023
    Hi Eva! Everything is coming along in my marriage process, except I’m wondering about do I need to be there in person, in Peru when my fiancé submits the documents to the courthouse and the whole ordeal with the newspaper? I was told that it can take 5 days to legalize my document when I thought it would be the same day which makes meeting the deadline for everything else impossible. Do you know if I can ask them to legalize my documents faster? 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 01/11/2023
      @Lex
      Hello Lex,

      as said before it depends on the municipality, you should check with them about their requirements. But usually, yes, both partners have to be there to submit the documents, but sometimes municipalities are extremely cooperative and accept the documents when only the Peruvian partner and the witnesses are present. So, the municipality where you plan to marry is the only one who can answer this question. 

      Or, have you considered getting married at a notary public in Peru? Even though the general requirements and process are the same, it's sometimes easier and more organized.

      And if your documents have an Apostille and are translated by on official translator in Peru, a so-called traductor publico juramentado, they usually don't have to be legalized again by the Peruvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (ask at the municipality if the Apostile and official translation is enough or if they want the additional legalization). However, depending on the translator, the translation can take from a few days to a couple of weeks. So, it might be necessary that you ship the documents with a courier service to future spouse before you come to Peru.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Lex · 04/10/2023
    Thank you for this wealth of knowledge. Do you know anything about making your own single status affidavit? Is this a good optio
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 04/10/2023
      @Lex
      Hello Lex,

      it depends. It's only a good option if the municipality where you plan to marry accepts the affidavit stating that you are single. If so, just go for it. 

      Depending on the municipality they may accept a simple sworn statement where you confirm that you are single. A form letter of this so-called Declaración jurada de soltería can be found on the Peruvian government website or may be available at the municipality. 

      Or the municipality requests a notarially certified affidavit stating that you are single. Then just pay the nearest notary in Peru a visit.

      Or they can be convinced to accept a sworn statement issued by your embassy.

      So, best check with the municipality if they accept a Declaración jurada de soltería and in which form and go from there.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Lex · 25/09/2023
    Hello, my partner and I are trying to get married soon in Peru. I live in the US and he lives in Ica. The problem is that I don’t have a lot of time to spend in Peru doing this whole process. How much of this stuff can I do in my home country? I am planning on having my birth certificate and single status document, notarized and apostilled, while in the US. As for the rest, can it all be done within one week in Perú? Do I have to be there for my partner to submit my documents to the courthouse? Do I have to be there when my partner submits the proof that our wedding was in the newspaper?

    (Part 2) Also, is it possible to have my documents, notarized and apostilled in the US? Does it save time?
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 25/09/2023
      @Lex Hello Lex,

      If the municipality where you plan to marry is cooperative, you only need to be present for the ceremony. I know quite a few Peruvian/foreigner couples who managed to get the preparation/application work done without the foreign partner being in Peru or with the foreign partner only being in Peru for the medical exam and the application. It really depends on the municipality.

      Either way, you must get organized. Best check the exact requirements and process, especially when a foreigner is involved, with the municipality and then make a plan how you can bring together your travel plans and things that you both have to arrange for your marriage together in Peru.

      Then the most important documents you need from the US are your birth certificate and an official document stating that you are single (free to marry). Both must (!) get an Apostille in the US; so, getting the Apostille done in the US has nothing to do with saving time, it’s a must as documents can only be apostilled in the country where they were issued. As these have to be translated in Peru, which usually isn’t done in a day, it might be necessary that you send them to your partner, so he can get this done before you arrive.

      In the meantime, your partner should check if his DNI is up-to-date (if not, he must update it at Reniec) and get a copy of his birth certificate, his certificado de soltería and, if applicable, either a current utility bill or a sworn statement confirming the address.

      I’m not sure what you mean with “for the rest”. Once you have the required documents, all that’s left is the medical exam and submitting the documents. If your partner is able to make appointments for the medical exam at a registered doctor/hospital and at the municipality in the week you plan to be in Peru then yes, “the rest” can be done in a week.

      Usually, yes, both partners have to be there to submit the documents at the municipality, but sometimes municipalities are extremely cooperative and accept the documents when only the Peruvian partner and the witnesses are present. However, then your partner must send you the application form, you must sign it and send it back. And your partner most probably will need a copy of your passport. Check with the municipality about their process.

      And, no, usually it’s enough if the Peruvian partner submits the wedding announcement.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Frederick · 25/08/2023
    Hello,

    I'm a Canadian permanent resident and My fiancé is a Venezuelan Citizen but has resided in Peru for 5 years now. 
    We are planning to get married ( same-sex marriage ) so I can process his papers and hopefully bring him to Canada. 
    Can you advise me on what will be the process for the marriage 
    Documentation and things that I need to do/know

    Thank you
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 25/08/2023
      @Frederick
      Hello Frederick,

      Do you want to marry in Peru or in Canada?

      The problem in Peru is that the Peruvian Constitution defines marriage as a stable union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages or civil unions are unfortunately not possible in Peru. Sorry.

      So, if there is no way to get your fiancé to Canada to marry there, your only option is to check for countries that allow same-sex marriages, that don't require a visa for Venezuelans and Canadians and that allow tourists to get married.

      Hope everything works out for you.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    jimena cobeñas · 24/08/2023
    Hello there,

    Very interesting article! Can you please help me with this? My fiancé is from the UK, he is waiting to get his CNI (certificate of non impediment), is that enough to get married, or will also need an affidavis? because getting an appointment in the consulate is so bad at the moment! thanks so much!!!!!! 
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 25/08/2023
      @jimena cobeñas
      Hello Jimena,

      A CNI is a legal document that confirms you're free to marry. So, yes, to fulfill the "Certificado de soltería" requirement that should be enough. However, to be accepted in Peru, as all other foreign documents, your financé must get an Apostille on it and have it translated once in Peru.

      All the best.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Valeria · 20/08/2023
    Hi Eva,

    I am in a same sex marriage in the US and am on disability retirement from the federal government there.  I now hold dual citizenship (Peruvian and US) and I am thinking of living out my retirement in Peru with my wife, who is only a US citizen.  Is there any option for us with a family visa or the pension visa since my pension is US and she is legally entitled to it via our US marriage (it´s more than the required $1,000 monthly).  I also require physical assistance as I am now permanently disabled from a work injury.  I am working on getting my permanent disability status updated here medically as I was already registered as such in the US.  Thank you in advance!
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 21/08/2023
      @Valeria Hello Valeria,

      If you have your Peruvian passport and/or DNI, you won’t have any problem moving to and living in Peru. Your wife is another story.

      She only could apply for a rentista visa, when she is the one receiving a state or private pension including social security pension, government pension, employment related pension, union pension, disability pension, etc., so lifetime annuities, other lifelong benefits, or a permanent income for the rest of her life from royalties or dividends of at least US$ 1000 per month or the equivalent in any other currency. Even though in the US your wife is legally entitled to your pension, she can’t fulfill the requirements for a rentista visa as she can’t present a letter or confirmation of the pension fund or social security with her name on it.

      And unfortunately, she as well can’t apply for a family visa; at least not at the moment. If a foreigner is married to a Peruvian, the Peruvian part must register the marriage either at a Peruvian consulate (if the marriage was celebrated abroad) or at Reniec in Peru. The foreigner then must present the Peruvian marriage certificate when applying for a family visa.

      The problem is that till today, the Peruvian Constitution defines marriage as a stable union between a man and a woman. Same-sex marriages are not possible in Peru and same-sex marriages celebrated abroad are not accepted and won’t be registered.

      And even though just recently yet another court in Lima (not the first one) ruled that Reniec is obligated to register a same-sex marriage performed outside the country, they won’t do it as they argue that first the Peruvian Constitution has to be changed newly defining marriage, which only Congress can do but till today didn’t do.

      So, probably something changes in the future, but right now, there is no way to get your marriage registered and therefore your wife can’t apply for a family visa. Sorry.

      Greetings
      Eva
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Thomas · 30/07/2023
    I know of  Peruvian woman living in the U.S. who had a civil marriage in U.S. with an U.S. citizen.  The woman received residency in the US.  US resident stopped working and obtained social security disability payments of due to mental issues like bipolar.  She worked and paid for everything and let him stay in separate bedroom of her apt. As she was worn out from being with someone who wouldn’t work.   She passed away in the US.  She never registered her marrige in Peru.  Her death certificate in the US shows she is married.  Lawyers in Peru have said that Peru recognizes foreign marriages.  You have mentioned that Peru only recognizes marriages registered in Reniec.  Which is correct?
    • This commment is unpublished.
      Sunflower
      • LimaEasy
      · 31/07/2023
      @Thomas Hello Thomas,

      I’m not sure which lawyer in Peru told you that a marriage of a Peruvian celebrated outside Peru is automatically recognized. It isn’t.

      To be recognized in Peru, the Peruvian spouse must register the marriage either at a Peruvian consulate abroad or if he/she moved back to Peru at Reniec.

      Check out, for example, the Peruvian government website or the website of any Peruvian consulate in the US (as example I chose the General Consulate in Washington DC)

      If available, check the DNI, the Peruvian ID card of the woman. If her marital status (estado civil) says “soltera” (single) then after Peruvian law, she isn’t considered married in Peru. If it shows “casada” only then she is officially married in Peru.

      However, as I don’t know the reason why now after her death it’s so important if her marriage is recognized in Peru, there might be situations where Peruvian authorities will accept that she was married in the US without the marriage being officially registered. For example, if her US death certificate shows that she is married, a Peruvian consulate might still register her death in the Peruvian registry even though the marriage never was registered with Peruvian authorities. If however, the US spouse tries to claim his inheritance (assets in Peru) things might not be that easy.

      Depending on the situation getting in contact with a Peruvian consulate might be a wise decision.

      Greetings
      Eva

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