You can certify a common union in Colombia, or conduct a civil marriage, at your local notary. Colombian notaries are similar to the clerk of court office in the United States. Large cities like Medellin and Bogota have many notaries and finding one is relatively easy, but you need to be very careful in selecting a reputable one (we have long standing relationships with many notaries). Notaries also store many public documents for marriages and divorces.
Before a marriage in Colombia takes place, notaries need to verificate the Colombian birth certificate for single status. Legal eligibility to marry is determined by examination of Colombian nationals birth certificate by notaries and judges. Full versions of Colombian citizen’s birth certificates note current marriages and divorces.
A citizen of Colombia cannot be married to a foreigner (in Colombia) if their birth certificate still shows them as being married to another person. This is how Colombia tries to keep people from being married to more than one person at the same time. In turn, when foreigners get married in Colombia they need to prove they are single (by providing a variety of documents) before the marriage license is approved.
As for the declaration of assets for couples with children (INVENTARIO DE BIENES), judges are required to review assets of people who are getting married in order to protect the rights of children and their well-being in the future. The goal is to ascertain which assets belonged to each parent before they began their relationship so the future assets of the children are protected. In order to comply with this requirement, both persons entering into a marriage who already have children must first declare their assets with an attorney for review by a judge, who then must approve their marriage license.
If you are in Medellin, then we highly recommend the Civil Union as an alternate to the full marriage as its much cheaper to perform because the requirements are less if done correctly. You can avoid showing the birth certificate and proof of being single, which are 2 very expensive documents to legalize.
With CL&A’s asssitance, you will have attorneys reviewing thoroughly the Colombian marriage process with the utmost care.
Costs for Colombian Marriage Visa
Legal Services Package for Colombian Marriage & Visa
$300 USD Attorney Fees for Marriage or Civil Union
& Marriage Visa Application
Apostilles, Translations, Legalizations
75 – 125 USD (Marriage Certificate with Apostille for example)
Consular Messenger, Mail, and Notary Fees
$50 USD at the notary
$50 USD Consular Messenger Services
$20 USD Express Mail Services