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Ecuador Expat Forum

getting married in EC

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8/5/2010 21:48 EST

I have read a lot of useful information but I am still a little confused to which steps to take in getting a visa, documents, etc. My fiance returned to EC in Jan '10 and I will be moving in Sept/Oct, I have called the consulate here in Chicago and have gotten different information everytime. Can anyone simplify what documents I need for a visa, do I need a visa, if I need a return plane ticket, how long will it take to get a visa? Thanks a bunch!

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8/6/2010 11:38 EST

I was planning on getting married in EC in March, but plans have since changed and we are postponing the wedding for a while, but there is a lot that I have learned while researching this. Your best bet is to check on Ecuadorian government websites or the US embassy website, but a majority of the information is in spanish. I think that the information that I can offer is only good if you are planning on staying in Ecuador and applying for residency...

The first step is to apply for the 12-IX visa which is a 6 month tourist visa. For this you will need a medical exam, police report, bank statement, round trip airline ticket, etc, but your local Ecuadorian consulate should be able to tell you all those requirements. Once you arive to Ecuador you will need to register for I think census card within 30 days, I don't remember exactly where you do that.

There is a new law that foreigners who wish to get married in Ecuador must be in the country for at least 75 days, but I have heard some people have been able to get around this and get married sooner.

If you wish to look for a job in Ecuador, it is possible to get a RUC number which allows you to work on the 12-IX visa. There is another post in this forum that explains how that all works.

Most of the documents you need to get married, you will be able to get in Ecuador except for the "certificado de soltera" which you must get in the states. The only problem is that document does not exist here so you have to get something equivalent. I think this is a document that you can get from your Secretary of State office.

I would also reccommend getting your birth certificate translated and notorized as well as any university degrees or certifications. This is just my personal opinion and maybe someone else has a better idea if this is necessary.

Each consulate operates a little differently, but to be safe, you should apply for your visa at least 3-4 weeks before your departure. It is often cheaper to buy a round-trip than it is for a one-way ticket, so you might be better off buying a round trip and just not using the return trip.

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8/6/2010 20:57 EST

I just got married in Ecuador. We were told that now you must go to Quito or Guayaquil to be married. It will matter what registro de civil you go to. In Guayaquil there is at least 5 I think. We went to three and all had different requirements. The last one was the easiest because my fiancée was alone and asked the woman to help her. If you are divorced you must have an apostilled Copy and if posible an apostilled translation. Translations can be done here and should but for some reason an apostilled translation is accepted with out any trouble even though the apostill doesn't certify the translation. The "certificado de soltera" you get at the US Consulate here in Ecuador. Also I came here on the standard 3 month visa and got a 6 month visa while here and did not need a medical exam or police report. I can recommend my lawyer in a private email if you want. I came on a round trip ticket and have heard of others coming on a one way but there can be problems. If I remember correctly there was no savings on a one way when I booked my flight. Do bring an apostilled birth certificate and police report if you plan to stay after you are married. You can apply for citizenship once married.

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8/9/2010 09:49 EST

my partner and I are trying to figure out how we can both qualify for residents - we will most likely purchase property - but do we have to be married for us both to get the investor visa/residency ? "been there done that"- so we'd rather not - but even if we both contribute to the purchase of property we must be married?

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8/9/2010 18:24 EST

painternc, I actually made a post about that, not sure where it is though. Yes, you will have to be married in order to qualify for the $25,000 investment visa as a couple, OR you can each have your own, $25 grand each, the escritura will have to be divided and what a hassle. As I said in my last post (I can't find it!), my husband and I got married here in Ecuador (our ceremony in the states many years ago, was not a "legal" one), in the south of Quito, in Tomebamba. That is one place that I know if and there must be other places now where one can marry, as someone said there were various in Guayaquil. Very easy. It's only a piece of paper you know. Commitment to us has nothing do to with the comical ceremony that we had to endure! (I wish we could have filmed it!) If you have the money and need to 'not be married' it will be 25 grand each. No way to get around it. When in Rome...

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8/10/2010 11:24 EST

I did not get married in Ecuador, but rather in the US to a dual Ecuadorian/American citizen. We have since moved to Ecuador, where I am in the process of becoming a citizen. A person married to an Ecuadorian can apply directly for citizenship, rather than residency if they wish.

It is very important to have your birth certificate translated and apostilized, which is done by the Secretary of State office in the state where you were born. The birth certificate must be the complete version and not the abbreviated version some states issue for purposes like getting a passport. Also if you marry in the states, your marriage certificate needs to be translated and apostilized by the Secretary of State office in the state where you were married.

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