Mexican Law/divorce


QUESTION: I was married in Puerto vallarta in 2005 but it was never legal in the US, we are now going through a divorce.  I was told since there is no record of us being married where we live we need to call Mexico.  How do I get a divorce in mexico and how does it affect me here if we are legally not married here and I want to get remarried. Thanks

ANSWER: Dear Jamie,

A Mexican marriage is valid in the United States. Therefore, you are married in the United States as well. The validity of the Mexican marriage in the US does not depend on it being "filed" in any particular place in the US.

You can divorce in the US if you wish. However, if you wish to divorce in Mexico and there are no children and you and your spouse have no dispute regarding property, you can get an "administrative" divorce which is just a matter of filing out forms and paying a small fee.

You can do this in person in just about any Mexican state or you and your spouse can send powers of attorney to a mexican lawyer who can then do the paperwork.


John Lee Ward
Córdoba, Veracruz

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I talked to the court house here and they told me there is no record of marriage here therefore there is nothing we can do here.  We never obtained a marriage license.  They said they only thing i could do is call someone in Mexico.

Hi Jamie,

No matter where or how you divorce, you will need a certified copy of your marriage certificate.
You can obtain a copy from the Registro Civil in the locality where you were married.

Hopefully you know someone in Puerto Vallarta that can order a copy for you. If not, there are services that will do this for you for a fee.



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John Lee Ward


I can respond to any question related to Mexican Law and common business practices in Mexico. I can also compare and contrast between the American and Mexican legal systems.


Licenciatura en Derecho from the Universidad del Golfo en Cordoba, Veracruz. (Cedula Profesional No. 5713238) Maestria en Derecho from the Universidad de Cristobal Colon en Veracruz, Veracruz. (Cedula Professional No. 6358321) Currently a Candidate for a Doctorado en Derecho from the Universidad de Cristobal Colon. 5 years of litigation experience in Mexico.

Bachelors in Electronic Engineering, California Polytechnic State Univ. Juris Doctor, Concord University in Los Angeles Licenciatura en Derecho, Universidad del Golfo, Mexico Maestria en Derecho, Universidad de Cristobal Colon, Mexico Doctorado en Derecho (In Progress), Universidad de Cristobal Colon, Mexico

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