Brasil Marriage

Getting Married in Brasil as a Foreigner (Estrangeiro) – Part 1

FIrst up, take a deep breath, this is going to take some effort.. ;)

Like most processes in Brasil, getting married is marred by an amazon rain-forest like amount of paperwork if you are a foreigner. To get married to a Brasilian here I needed to provide the following (I’m a UK Citizen):

  • My birth certificate (Original long form, legalised by the consulate in London, translated, and registered here)
  • My parents names and dates of birth (Verbally)
  • 4 people to declare that I was single (You can also use a CNI, certificate of no impediament).
  • My passport
  • A public translator (my portuguese is OK, but not perfect for marriage).

I also took my CNH (Brasilian Driving Licence), my RNE (Foreigner Registration Number), my permanent VISA protocol number (it’s in progress) and copies of every piece of paper I could find – you can NEVER have enough paperwork in Brasil.

My spouse needed only provide her Birth Certificate and RG. Let me explain each piece of the above.

The Birth Certificate
As I’m living in Brasil I did not have my birth certificate with me (I’ve been here for years and it never occurred to me that I might actually need it – good job too really… as it would be useless here unless first legalised by the Brasilian consulate in London. It’s important to note that the BR Consulate is London only legalisies the Original Document, don’t bother sending it and a copy, they’ll just return it and waste your time. I got my folks back home to send it (twice) and after around about 10 days I got it back, a 3 day fedex trip to Brasil and it was in my hands.

I then took the document to a public translator and begged her to do it quickly, I paid around R$200 to have it done and it was finished the same day.

After having it translated it needs to be registered at a special Cartorio for marriages, this I did straight after (R$75) and was told it normally takes a week to process, I managed to get them to do this in 2 days, be nice.

My parents names and dates of birth
This part is easy, just have the information ready on your registration date. You just have to tell them, it’s critical you get your parents names EXACTLY the same as on your birth certificate, failure to get this right will result in a non-wedding.

4 People to declare my Single status
To get married anywhere you need to prove that you are single – when you get married here they take your Birth Certificate away, so it’s easy to see if your married or not when they ask to see your documents. There are two way to prove this:

1. Get a certificate of no impediment from the government, have it stamped by the FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth office), then legalised at the Consulate in London, then translated in Brasil, and finally registered here.

2. Take 4 people with you to the Cartorio who have known you for a long time, and have them all sign sworn statements testifying that you are to the best of their knowledge single. (I chose the simpler option)

My Passport
You need a current VISA entry stamp that will not expire until 20 days after you start the marriage process. If you already have you’re RNE and it doesn’t expire I belive you can use that too.

A Translator
If you do not speak fluent and I mean like a native fluent portuguese you’ll need a public translator or they will refuse to marry you. R$200 for the first hour and then R$80 per 15 minutes there after. I used the same lady that translated my Birth Certificate for me.

It costs around R$300 to get married at the cartorio (Registry office) and takes around 40mins depednign on your level of preparidness.

Supporting Documentation
Like everything here, take as much as possible, it’s better to have too much than not enough, I took every official document I could find, I also took copies of everything just in case.

Part 2 to Follow

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