top of page
  • Writer's pictureMadeira Relocation & Expat Services

Tying the Knot in Portugal / get married in Madeira

Tying the Knot in Madeira, Portugal

Portugal, with its rich history, beautiful landscapes, and warm climate, is a wonderful place to get married. However, like any country, it has its own set of legal requirements and procedures that must be followed.

Legal Requirements: Marriages in Portugal must comply with Portuguese law. Both civil ceremonies and Catholic church weddings are legally recognized. Religious ceremonies for all other churches and faiths must be preceded by a civil ceremony.

Age Requirements: The minimum age for getting married in Portugal is 16. However, written consent of both parents is required for those aged under 18.

Language:  The ceremony, whether civil or Catholic, will be conducted in Portuguese. It’s not a legal requirement to have a translator, but if neither of you speak Portuguese, you can arrange for an interpreter to be present throughout the ceremony.

Residency: Currently, there is no legal residency requirement for a wedding in Portugal.

Nationality:  Foreign citizens do not acquire Portuguese nationality when marrying a Portuguese citizen. However, they may apply for Portuguese citizenship after three years of marriage.

Civil Ceremony: Civil ceremonies are legally binding in Portugal. The ceremony for a civil wedding can take place at the registry office (Camara) or at a location of your choice. The ceremony must be performed by a celebrant from the Camara to be legally binding.

Same-sex Marriage: Same-sex civil weddings are permitted with the same provisions.

Matrimonial Property Regimes

In Portugal, there are three main matrimonial property regimes:

  1. Community of Acquired Property (Comunhão de Adquiridos): Only goods and property acquired after the marriage are communal.

  1. Community of Property (Comunhão Geral de Bens): All property brought to the marriage and acquired during the marriage is communal. This marital regime cannot be chosen if one or both of the marrying parties already has children.

  1. Separation of Property (Separação de Bens): Each spouse maintains separate ownership of all property. The law imposes this marital regime when one or both of the couple are aged sixty or more.

It’s important to note that these regimes can have significant implications for property and financial matters during the marriage and in the event of divorce. Therefore, it’s advisable to seek legal advice when choosing a matrimonial property regime. If you don’t choose a regime, the default is the Community of Acquired Property.

In Portugal, the law mandates the “Separation of Property” (Separação geral de bens) marital regime when one or both members of the couple are aged sixty or more. Under this regime, there is no communion of property. Each spouse retains full ownership and management rights over their current and future assets, regardless of whether these assets were acquired before or after the wedding. They can also dispose of these assets freely. This law is designed to protect the interests of older individuals entering into marriage. It’s always advisable to seek legal advice when choosing a matrimonial property regime.

#get married in Madeira



1 view0 comments


bottom of page