Marriage and Divorce in Ecuador

Marriage in Ecuador

If you would like to get married in Ecuador, we advise you to review the requirements on the Ecuadorian Civil Registry for the latest information.

A foreigner may get married in Ecuador but some additional documentation may be required by local authorities, we recommend you have the following handy:

  • Birth Certificate (apostilled and translated)
  • Previous Marriage Certificates (apostilled and translated)
  • Divorce Decree’s  or Death Certificates (apostilled and translated)

 

 

 

In most cases when getting married in Ecuador, the Civil Registry asks for a sworn statement stating the marital status of the foreign spouse and his or her citizenship.  This document is called an “Affidavit of Marriage”, it must be completed in Spanish, and notarized at the U.S. Embassy/Consulate; please keep in mind that this document has a validity of 30 days only.

To complete this requirement you can:

  1. Download the form and fill it out (filled in from questions 1 to 7, no corrections are allowed) (PDF 17kb)
  2. Schedule an appointment online for a notarial service at the U.S. Embassy in Quito or at the U.S. Consulate in Guayaquil.We strongly suggest you visit the Civil Registry to make sure you have all the documentation required before scheduling an appointment for the Affidavit of Marriage

When you come to the appointment please make sure you bring the following:

  • Valid current U.S. Passport.
  • An additional photo ID (cédula, driver’s license, etc.) to leave with the guards.
  • Affidavit of Marriage: Form must be typed and not handwritten. The form must be filled out completely in Spanish and corrections on the form will not be accepted (PDF 17k)(this document must be signed in front of the Consular Officer).
  • If the document is rejected at the Ecuadorian Civil Registry due to misspellings or erroneous information, the applicant will have to schedule a new appointment and pay a new fee.
  • Fee for this service is $50 you can pay cash or credit card.
  • If you are divorced you must bring your divorce decree/certificate.

If you wish to register your foreign marriage or divorce in the U.S. you will need to register it in the State that you reside, civil status changes cannot be registered at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Please get in touch with the Office of Vital Records of the State that you reside in order to register your civil status change, sometimes they request these documents to be translated and apostilled.  For more information on how to get an Ecuadorian Birth, Death, Marriage Certificate or any public document apostille, please check the information on the Ecuadorian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

A marriage that is valid under Ecuadorian law is generally valid in any state of the United States. Marriage of American citizens in Ecuador must be performed in accordance with Ecuadorian law.  Please note that Dual nationals (American/Ecuadorian citizens) who wish to marry in Ecuador do not need to marry as U.S. citizens in order for their marriage to be recognized in the United States.  They may instead marry as Ecuadorian citizens – a process which incurs less time and expense than the process to marry as a U.S. citizen.

The information below is therefore relevant to dual citizens who still wish to marry as U.S. citizens and to U.S. citizens who do not hold dual nationality with Ecuador.  In addition, this is for general information purposes only, since the interpretation of Ecuadorian laws and regulations does not fall within the competence of the U.S. Embassy.

The alien spouse of a U.S. citizen does not automatically acquire United States citizenship through marriage.  The spouse must obtain an immigrant visa to be able to immigrate to the United States.

For further information on immigration; please visit the Family of a U.S. Citizen section at the USCIS website.

Divorces are generally arranged with the assistance of a lawyer under Ecuadorian law.  Depending on the circumstances, various documents (such as the marriage certificate, birth certificates, financial documents, etc.) must be submitted to the local court that is handling the case.

If you require assistance on this matter you can review the legal assistance section on this website.