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Help! Legal in Canada???

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I am in a panic.  I went to my travel agent the other day to finalize some things for our trip that we are leaving for on Feb 27th and she informed me that the marriage in Mexico will not be legal here in Canada and I still have to get "married" her.  I was advised to go to the Law Court (I am in Winnipeg) and would pay a $50 fee to be married.  I really cannot believe that this is true. We are having our wedding at the Gran Bahia Principe Coba and are having the civil ceremony and getting the blood work and everything.  What is the point of all of that if it's not legal?  Is there anyone out there that could please clarify this for me.  I was also told not to tell anyone that we are not being legally married in Mexico or else our guests will be upset.  Any help that anyone can offer would be so appreciated. 

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I dont have any details about your specific situation.  However, I think you should just go to your local court, and pay the $50 fee to get married legally in your own country.  You can still travel to Mexico and have the ceremony as if nothing was different.  You will have your dream wedding and be legally married in your own country.  I really think that is the best way to go.  Also, you could skip the blood testing and any civil costs in Mexico.  Im not sure about your guests being upset, but I think it is completely your choice to not tell them.  Your guests do not need to know where you signed the legal documents.  They will be at your wedding.  They will see you get married.  That is all that matters.  The legal part isn't any of the guests concerns.  It shouldn't matter at all to them.  I think getting married in your own country and having the ceremony in Mexico is the best bet. 

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Sharyn, she's probably wrong. There may  be different requirements for each resort, but a legal ceremony in Mexico is valid in Canada. You might encounter difficulties changing your name with Spanish documents. There is a process for authenticating foreign documents, but you shouldn't be required to do so.


Here;s the government of Canada link:



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Hey Sharyn,


I'm in Winnipeg as well. Here is my understanding of things.


1. You go get married everything is legal in Mexico, you won't be married automatically when you get back to Winnipeg.  You will need to get all your documents translated and notorized.


You can call Vital Stats for specific details.  As long as your marriage is legal in Mexico, it can be legal in Canada - there are just some extra steps in.


Alternatively, if you decide to go the route of getting married here (we did).


1. I'm fairly certain you can't just go to the law courts or city hall and get married, unless a marriage commissioner happens to be located there, or you've arranged an appointment with a judge.  Additionally the fee isn't $50 (your travel agent doesn't sound like they've done this before!)


  • Marriage Licence: $100.00
  • Ceremony:
    • Marriage Commissioner who is not a civil servant: $50.00 plus reasonable fees for related expenses such as travel.
    • Marriage Commissioner who is a civil servant (such as a judge): $100.




If you have any questions about the Marriage Licence requirements, call our office at 945-3701 or 1-866-949-9296, during our office hours of Monday to Friday 8:30-4:30 or email to vitalstats@gov.mb.ca.


I'd call them asap and verify that there is nothing you have to do beforehand, and whom to contact once you get back.  Don't panic!


Good luck and congrats!!


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