Legal Requirements for Getting Married in the Dominican Republic
Allow at least 10 days from arrival in the Dominican Republic to wedding date for processing paperwork. We recommend giving yourself more time due to preparation, weekends, holidays or unexpected delays.
Necessary legal documents:
Please note: All documents must be submitted in Spanish , translated at the Dominican Consulate in your home country by an authorized translator.
Please note that all documents must be submitted in Spanish. Contact the Dominican Republic Embassy in your resident country for an authorized translator. If your documents are translated, be prepared to submit the original copies in your native language for verification as well as the translated version.
- Original or certified copy of birth certificates
- Valid Passports and photocopies of the photo/details page
- Tourist Card
- Notarized affidavit declaring
- Notarized Statutory of Declarations that each party is free to marry (Certificate of No Impediment*-valid for 3 months)
- Divorce decree, if applicable (female divorcees must wait 10 months from the finalization of the divorce to remarrying. US divorcees note: the US Embassy requires you to name the person who officiated your previous marriage)
- Death certificate, if applicable
- Any change of name requires stamped and dated legal proof by a solicitor.
- Some places of worship require proof of pre-nuptial counseling or other documents or certificates. Contact your chosen officiant for more information prior to leaving of your trip.
Legal requirements to get married:
- Ceremony (Civil/Religious)
Civil and Catholic ceremonies are legally recognized weddings preformed in the Dominican Republic. If planning a religious wedding of a faith other than Catholic, be sure to visit the registrar’s office, in addition to your ceremony, to file the paperwork to legalize your wedding. If planning a civil ceremony, it is recommended to write your embassy or consulate in the Dominican Republic to request permission to marry.
Please Note: You must have your original Certificate of Marriage, if you are interested in a ceremony to renew your vows.
- Age and Relation
The bride and groom must be at least 18 years of age. If they are underage, notarized parental consent is necessary. With parental consent, women must be at least 15 years of age and men must be at least 16 years of age. Note that the legal age in your home country must be met to be recognized. For example, the United States requires that both parties be 18 years of age for your marriage to be recognized upon your return to the United States. The bride and groom cannot be related by blood, marriage or adoption. Proxy marriages are not allowed.
Two witnesses over 18 years of age must be present for the ceremony and provide their passports. The witnesses cannot be family.
Send photocopies of all paperwork, 6 months in advance of the planning wedding date, to the Oficialia del Estado Civil. Be prepared to bring originals or certified copies to submit upon arrival in the Dominican Republic.
Wedding Banns must be published prior to the ceremony.
Note that there are specific Matrimonial Property Laws (scroll down) that apply to marriage. A Common Property arrangementautomatically applies, but a different agreement can be arranged.
- The bride and groom will sign all the required documents at the ceremony. The bride and groom will be given the Certificate of Marriage from the religious officiate of their choice.
- After the ceremony, the local Justice of the Peace will provide a copy of the newlyweds Certificate of Marriage upon request. The certificate is available within 2 days proceeding the ceremony.
*A Certificate of No Impediment, is also known as a Single Status Affidavit, Single Status Statutory Declaration, Certificate of No Record, a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage, Certificate of Nulla Osta or a Certificate de coutume (plus an MP2A form).
Note: This information can change at any given moment. For up-to-date information, contact your embassy in the country in which you plan to marry.
We invite you to contact us with any new information. Be sure to note, “Update Marriage Requirements in the Dominican Republic” in the subject line.