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  • Writer's pictureSylvia Chaves

Q&A with the Senior Officer of the Costarrican Civil Registry

As a Costa Rican Notary Public, Nikole Amerling, Diverse Wedding´s lawyer had a phone conversation with Mr. Luis Guillermo Chinchilla Mora, Senior Officer of the Costarrican Civil Registry. The main purpose of that chat was to clear out some thoughts and facts about the historic moment that comes next May 26th in Costa Rica when LGBTQ+ marriage will be legally recognized with all rights and duties.

Special thanks to Mr. Chinchilla for answering our questions.

At what time on May 26th, 2020 LGBTQ+ weddings will be legal in Costa Rica?

From 00:00 on May 26th, the main Civil Registry virtual platform will be enabled to validate information, from both spouses, instead of the terms "groom" and "bride", when filed by the Notary Public whom authorizes the civil marriage.

Civil Marriage will be dully registered within 10-15 working days after Civil Registry validates all legal requirements are dully fulfilled and submitted by the Notary Public to complete the registration process. After a marriage is celebrated before a Notary Public registration process must be filed within the next 8 natural days.

Besides the current digital platform (which was developed in 2011), Civil Registry is developing an app, so Public Notaries will be able to finish a successful registration process within minutes.

Is there any chance that on May 26th LGBTQ+ marriage will be delayed or canceled by the Costa Rican Government?

He answered, "absolutely not".

On November 2018, the Supreme Court gave a transitory timeframe of 18 months to declare unconstitutional the article No.14, 6 of Family Code which prohibits same sex marriages. From now on we are 4 days away. Congress did not made any oppositions.

Are there any requests of legal marriage recognition from Marriages registered in other countries?

Yes, 31 marriages celebrated and registered in other countries are on queue to be recognized on May 26th after they fulfill all the requirements.

Are there any requests or legal marriages registrations for ceremonies granted and performed in Costa Rica by Costarrican Notaries?

Yes, there are 23 legal marriages celebrated in Costa Rica in queue for being registered on May 26th, 2020 after fulfilling all the legal and formal requirements.

Same sex marriage has the same legal requirements and formalities as a heterosexual marriage?

Yes, they have the same legal formalities and requirements ruled on Costa Rican Family Code such as:

  1. Full particulars of spouses

  2. Freedom of marital status which means they must be single, dully divorced or widowed with no moral, legal o physical impediments to get married. Must be demonstrated through a legal document dully translated and apostilled and/or through a sworn statement.

  3. Two witnesses

  4. Must be granted before a Notary Public, dully authorized by Civil Registry and from October 2020 Public Civil Registry will be authorizing legal marriages on their offices.

  5. Notary must file the marriage document and further documentation within 8 days after the date of marriage. Within 15 days Civil Registry will be approving civil marriage.

If you have any legal doubts, contact us at

At Diverse Weddings, we are excited for May 26th and we would like to share this amazing offer with you! Our lawyer and Notary Public, Nikole Amerling will perform your LGBTQ+ ceremony in Costa Rica for only $395 (original price $595) -after May 26th! Contact us for more information!

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