With a choice of luxurious resorts, colonial buildings and idyllic white-sand beaches fringed by gently swaying palm trees, Puerto Rico is the perfect spot to say 'I do' – and the ideal destination for that long dreamt of beach wedding!
From the elegant colonial majesty of Old San Juan to lush tropical gardens and picture perfect white-sand beaches, Puerto Rico offers a wide range of exotic and traditional venues for your destination wedding.
The legal requirements for getting married in Puerto Rico are relatively straightforward. Marriages performed in Puerto Rico are internationally recognised and legally binding.
Residency Requirement– None.
Blood Test – None for foreign visitors; but residents of Puerto Rico are required to have blood tests.
To get married in Puerto Rico, couples must obtain a Marriage License from the Demographic Registry office – the marriage license bureau – in San Juan. There is no waiting period.
Ensure that all documents are in your legal name, and provide affidavits in cases where you are known by another name. Originals of all documentation are preferred. If you’re unable to obtain an original Decree Absolute / Death Certificate you may provide a certified true copy.
All documents must be issued in English, otherwise they must be translated by an Official Translator and subsequently certified.Documents required for getting married in Puerto Rico, include…
Note: The affidavit must be written by a lawyer, Notary Public or other person authorized to administer paths in that country. This declaration must accompany the application.
The registrar will examine all the above documents and affix them to the back of the Marriage License. The couple must review all these documents, sign all sections of the Marriage License and present it at the wedding ceremony. Anyone under 21 must be accompanied by a parent.
The wedding officiant must submit the Marriage Licence to the Demographic Registry of the municipality where the ceremony took place no later than 10 days after the marriage.
The Marriage Certificate is generally available within 10 days of filling.
You can order your Marriage Certificate online through the official website of the Government of Puerto Rico. There is a small fee payable with a credit card. Or you can ask your wedding planner to pick up the marriage certificate on your behalf and mail it to you. A copy of both of your photo IDs must accompany a authorisation letter giving permission to your wedding planner.
European Union citizens (except the United Kingdom and Ireland) may need to have their Marriage Certificate apostilled (or authenticated).
This does not apply to citizens of United States, Canada, Australia or New Zealand. Citizens of Asian countries, South and Central America should check with their Civil Registrar/Marriage Officer as to whether an Apostille is required for your country.
Your wedding planner can assist you in obtaining the Apostille.
Some faiths may require additional documents for a church service. You may want to check this with your wedding co-ordinator or local minister.
For instance, couples of the Roman Catholic faith should allow at least three months before the planned wedding date in order to process all the necessary paperwork (certificates of baptism, dispensations, statements of freedom to marry, etc.).
The wedding ceremony of a Roman Catholic must take place in a church rather than in a resort or on a beach.
Internal Revenue Stamp – USD$20. This will be affixed to the Marriage License to authenticate the document.
Marriage Certificate – USD$10.
Most hotels in Puerto Rico provide wedding coordinators who can assist you plan your destination wedding in Puerto Rico.
Further information: Visit the Demographic Registry office, 3rd Floor, Plaza Las Américas Mall (525 Avenida Franklin Delano Roosevelt, San Juan, 00918, Puerto Rico).
The office is open from Monday to Saturday from 9am-9pm and on Sunday from 11am-7pm. You can call to schedule an appointment, call toll-free 1-800-866-7827 (from the United States or Puerto Rico).
Please note: while accurate at time of publication this information is for guidance purposes only and liable to change without notice. Please check with your wedding planner at your resort of choice or the relevant embassy of the country in which you intend to marry for up-to-date details before your wedding.
Latest update: How to get married in Puerto Rico: 13 January, 2023