Getting married in Brazil

Hi all,

We invite all the ones who got married in Brazil or who are about to get married in Brazil to participate in this thread :)

What are the formalities to get married in Brazil? Is it the same for a couple of foreigners of for a mixed couple (between a foreigner and a native of Brazil)?

Are the procedures complicated?

How long does it take to carry out all the formalities?

Thank you in advance for participating,


An excerpt from my posting "A Gringo's Survival Guide for Brazil"

Marrying a Brazilian – Also bureaucratic, depending on the state you may be required to produce different documents. In São Paulo you will require an original of your birth certificate (long form bearing the full name of your parents) and have it authenticated by your embassy or consulate, this must also be accompanied by a certified translation into Portuguese. Also required will be certified copies of your passport and entry card. If you are divorced you will also require an original of your Certificate of Divorce which must also be accompanied by a certified translation. Also all documents must have been issued within the previous six months or they are no longer considered valid here in Brazil. It is important to understand the community property rules that apply to your marriage. Generally speaking most marriages are under the "Regime de Comunhão Parcial de Bens" which is the system we are mostly familiar with. Assets owned by each party prior to marriage continue to be theirs following divorce, those aquired after the marriage are divided equally. With real estate this may not always be exactly the case since any increase in value of the property due to improvements and further construction after the date of the marriage will have to be evaluated and divided between the parties. "Regime de Separação Total de Bens" is a complete separation of assets and is extremely rare in Brazil. It is used mostly in cases where the for individuals over the age of 60 years (not sure of exact age) and generally have considerable assets. As far as I am aware this is obligatory in such cases. Prenuptial agreements are also becoming increasingly popular in Brazil and can eliminate substantially any future disputes should the union end in divorce. Worth thinking about. One other point, marriage in and of itself is no guarantee of obtaining a Permanent Visa although it will help. In most cases the Federal Police will view all marriages as one of "convenience" and check things out thouroughly, including a surprise visit to your home and chatting with neighbors to confirm that a couple actually exists.

Divorcing a Brazilian - A judicial divorce in Brazil is a complex and very drawn out process, which in most cases can only be granted following a judicial separation (Separação de Corpo e Partilha de Bens) has taken place. Each situation is different too. It is possible, in cases where there are no children of the marriage and no dispute over division of assets (or they have already been divided by legal agreement) to divorce in the cartório (registry). In cases where there has been a defacto or judicial separation of at least one year you may then go direct to divorce. You will require two witnesses to swear that the separation is of at least one year. If the separation is less than that you can not do so. The laws still require that a lawyer handle a divorce in the cartório, but the same lawyer can represent both parties if they so choose. The fees are quite reasonable. The "Escritura de Divorcio" is issued the same day, however it must be registered in the cartório where the marriage actually took place afterwards. So, it is much easier if possible to seek the divorce in the same cartório where you got married in the first place if this is possible. Following registration in the original cartório you will not be free to re-marry (if this is the case) until a period of 30 days has elapsed.


Note: Recent changes to the laws which govern divorces in the cartório... It is no longer necessary to prove a legal separation of one year or defacto separation of two years to proceed directly to divorce in the cartório in the case of a consentual divorce where no minor (or disabled dependents) children are involved and there are no disputes between the parties regarding division of matrimonial assests (partilha de bens) or alimony (pensão alimenticia). Both parties can economize a little because they can use one lawyer to handle all the formalities at the cartório.

When you say that document have to issued in 6 months. I have my birth and divorce certificate apostilled. The apostilled is over a couple of years. I am also getting the documents certified by the US Brazilian Consulate this month June 11, 2012. I will be in Brazil November 23 and applying for marriage application. Where does the six months applied to what documents. Thanks

All documents that you submit to any cartório or any other government body must be issued within six months prior to the date submitted. For some strange reason any document older than that is no longer considered valid. BUREAUCRACY at its very finest. Birth certificates, marriage certificates, divorce certificates, criminal records checks and their translations all fall into this category, sorry to tell you.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

What you are saying then I have to repay for all my Document to be issued  again like my Birth record and Divorce record. The one I have already were apostille do that make a difference and now they are at the Brazilian consulate to be certified. That will be with in six months does that work. Thanks for your help

Getting Married in Brazil 11/26/2012
I just visited the police they wrote out my letter right on the spot. In Belo Horizonte central it did not cost me anything but a taxi ride. I went to Venda Nova registry and they processed my papers. I was approve today 11/26/12 it took two hours. Here is what I gave them and you need.

1. Birth Certificate with Brazilian Consulate seal from the US.
   They were all translated by a Translator in the US. He was certified
   and the date on the document did not matter it was issued in 1998.
   The consulate stamp was within 6 months and all the documents I will
   mention were certified by the consulate.
2. My full Divorce papers certified they were issued in the 6 months.
3. My Marriage Certificate to who I was divorced
4. The local police paper not translation issued here
5. We were able to just sign a paper stating we were single at the
   registry. Did not need any proof.
6. I also had a copy of my passport with Visa and licence that was
   translated. They accepted that I did have my passport with me they
   look at during the whole process.
   Again no certification or other stamps needed for my copy of
   passport. This was the only copy that was not certified by the
7. Here is the funny thing we stopped there to just see if we had all
   the papers needed and they told us we could register. My Brazilian
   girlfriend had two witness lineup but they were not with us. So she    ask another couple who was applying to be are witness and they accepted them.
8. We filled out our application and they gave us our date and said we
   were approved. But it is two months out today is 11/26/12 our date
   02/05/13. It still worked out I am here till 02/17/13. They are
   posting in the paper for 30 day now before it final. It took two
   hours then they had us pay the 250 R
9. The registry is in Venda Nova about a hour from Belo Horizonte
   Central heading for the International Airport I would recommend this Registry it was simple but again I made sure everything was approve by the consulate. I had 25 pages to Translate and it cost me $450 in the US. I think this was a great deal since my girlfriend said it cost her 80 Real per page mine would cost 2000 Reals. Most of the other quote I got in the US were close to $900. If you need this email me I will give you the Translator name and contact. Hope this helps

Hi Vegas12,

Not exactly. Documents have to have been issued within the 6 month period of having them 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate/Embassy. Once legalized they retain their validity and no longer fall under the 6 month rule from that point on. Any other documents that you need to submit to the Cartório (Registry) that do not require Consular Legalization, must have been issued within the 6 months prior to the date received at the Cartório.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

Dear William,

I am visiting Brazil on a tourist visa and planning to get married in Sao Paulo with my long time fiance whom I know for 6 years. Regarding the documentation for marriage, I came to know that I require a legalized Birth Certificate from Brazilian embassy in my country.

However, I don't have my birth certificate, it got misplaced in due course of time and it was issued 30 years ago and that too in another language. I checked with the certificate issuing authority and they say they were not able to find such old records. Is there any other way around for marriage/documentation?

I was planning to apply for permanent residency after the marriage. It would be great if you know anything about the situation.



I'm a bit confused by your posting. Your birth certificate is written in another language? How can that be? If you were not born in the country where you are now residing or now a citizen you will still need to apply for the birth certificate in the nation where you were actually born. I find it unbelievable that records from thirty years ago are not available, I'm 63 and can get a replacement birth certificate from my country tomorrow if I need one.

If you are able to obtain a birth certificate, it must be the "long form" or actually registry of birth that shows the names of both of your parents. It must then be legalized by the Brazilian Consulado-Geral in the country in which it was issued.

I am not aware that there is any exception to this rule. If you can't find a birth document I seriously think you're just out of luck as far as immigrating and getting married is concerned.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

marry her on your country...then apply Brazilian visa


By another language, I mean other than English. English is not out national language. Also the embassy doesnt accept notarized translation. I guess I will need to get an original one anyhow from the issuing authority.


Sorry ats_maverick,

It's still unclear. Ok, so your birth certificate is not in English,

WHATEVER country is your birth country you need to obtain your ORIGINAL birth certificate from the Department of Vital Statistics in that nation. It must be the long form (i.e. it shows the full name of BOTH of your parents). It must, by Brazilian requirements, have been issued in the six months prior to it being presented to the to the Brazilian Consulate in the issuing nation, to be legalized. Once you are in Brazil the birth certificate must then be translated into Portuguese by a notarized translator (tradutor juramentado). Both the original birth certificate and the translation, along with all other required documents then are to be turned over to the Cartório where you intend to get married.

I hope this clears up any doubts you may have.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

I agree with Willian he help me with his advice to get all the right documents. The one thing I will add is the Register I got married at did want certified Documents. They would not accept my copies. They were all had Brazilian Consulate Stamps and Translations.

Hi ats_maverick,

Once you have all the documentation ready you must take it all to the Civil Registry (Cartório das Pessoas Naturais) with witnesses (two I believe, but check) and file an Intention to Marry. This process can take anywhere from 30 to 60 days, then the banns must be published in the Diário Oficial de União (DOU) the Registry will then confirm that you may go ahead and marry.

You must be aware that civil marriages (the only legal marriage) are performed in Portuguese. If either the bride or groom does not speak Portuguese then you must hire an interpreter.

With all the paperwork involved I would allow about 3 months in order to go through the entire process and get married. Therefore it is necessary to have all of the paperwork ready upon arrival, enter into the process as soon as possible after arrival and even then it is likely you will need to apply for an extension of your tourist visa in order to get everything done.

Once married you apply for a permanent visa and the document (protocolo) you receive from the Federal Police allows you to remain in Brazil (and obtain a work permit) until the process is completed.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

If you want to see the process I posted it here in this section on 11/26/2012. When we registered they gave us a date of 2/05/2013. We ask if we could move it up to a different date. They put us on a list and two days later they called and said we could get married on 01/15/2013 at 10:50 that morning. We had to go back to the Registry to have the paperwork changed. They only do wedding on Tuesdays and Thrusday. Willian is right you need two witness to register and also two to get married they do not have to be the same people. I do not speak Portuguese I got a interpreter. If you want to see my marriage I posted a video on my Facebook page. It only took 6 minutes and I also got certified copies of the marriage that same day. Good luck I was over prepared even had a police report from my state with me. I will be applying for my wife and two girls for Green Card that another story.

Dears. May I ask questions about divorce here or it is better to start a new conversation? Thanks.

Hello enzo36camp.

You should start a new thread on the Brazil forum for better interaction. ;)

Thank you,

Dear William,

Thanks for the information. I was busy in getting my birth certificate issued afresh.

However, there is one doubt. The village which issued my original birth certificate 30 yrs ago, doesn't exist now and they have been replaced by city municipalities from 2010. So I got a new birth certificate but issued with a date in 2010 and not 2013.

Also the Brazilian consulate in India doesn't say anything of "issued within 6 months" about the documents for legalization. Does the rule still apply? Bcoz I got my certificate issued with a date of 2010 for the reason mentioned above. If it is really the case, can I give them a letter from the civic administration about their inability to issue the documents with current date?


Dear William,

Its a bit confusing.
In your post on 2012-03-16 and 2012-06-13 in this current thread, you said and I quote:

"Also all documents must have been issued within the previous six months or they are no longer considered valid here in Brazil." - 2012-03-16


"All documents that you submit to any cartório or any other government body must be issued within six months prior to the date submitted." - 2012-06-13

However, in a reply to Vegas12 on 2012-11-28, you say:

"Documents have to have been issued within the 6 month period of having them 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate/Embassy. Once legalized they retain their validity and no longer fall under the 6 month rule from that point on."

Its appears contradicting. If any document is valid for lifetime after legalization (i.e, doesn't fall under 6 month rule), why any cartório would need them to be issued within 6 months of "submission to them"? Is it submission to them (the cartórios)? Or submission to the embassy for legalization?

If the 6 month rule is for legalization, then again there is a doubt as follows:
On 2012-11-28 you say:

"Any other documents that you need to submit to the Cartório (Registry) that DO NOT require Consular Legalization, must have been issued within the 6 months prior to the date received at the Cartório."

Since the birth certificate REQUIRES Consular Legalization, it doesn't need to be issued within 6 months prior to legalization. Am I correct to interpret this way?

For example, a "proof of single" certificate doesn't need legalization, so it HAS to be issued within 6 months of submitting to the government. Right?

Sorry for any misunderstanding on my part. I just want to clear some doubts.

Thanks a lot!

Also as vegas12 had quoted:

"1. Birth Certificate with Brazilian Consulate seal from the US. They were all translated by a Translator in the US. He was certified and the date on the document did not matter it was issued in 1998.    The consulate stamp was within 6 months and all the documents I will mention were certified by the consulate. "

His birth certificate was issued in 1998 but it still got legalized in 2012. This 6 months rule is really confusing. :/

Hi ats_maverick,

Talking about two totally different situations with applications in two different countries different systems (i.e. government and cartórios each of which have their own rules). One was talking about the application process for permanent visas and the other was about marriage of foreigners in Brazil. While the documentation is almost always the same the process and way they are treated is different. But, essentially it's 6 months before submission to either a Cartório here or to the Consulado-Geral or Embassy of Brazil abroad for "legalization".

The law regarding documents used here in Brazil is quite clear. Any document must have been issued withing the six months prior to being submitted to a Cartório for any legal purposes, such as marriage or submitted to the Federal Police in applications for permanency, etc., or they are not considered valid. I do not know why this is, but that's the way it is.

There is only one exception, that I am aware of, to this rule and that is that any document issued in a foreign nation, which therefore must be legalized by the Consulado-Geral do Brasil in the issuing nation. Once legalized by the Consulate such a document remains valid, apparently, forever.

So for example if I chose to get married in Brazil now, I could not use a birth certificate issued more than six months ago, since that does not need to be 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate in my home country. It only needs to be authenticated by my country's consulate and translated by a notarized translator. Regardless of the date of issue of the birth certificate in the foreign country, if the Consulate of that country has authenticated it, there is no problem of limited validity essentially what happens there is that the document is accepted based on the date of authentication by the foreign Consulate.

If, for example, I am applying for a permanent visa one of the requirements there is a Certified Records Check, which MUST be 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate in the country where it was issued. So I apply for the check, it must be legalized within the six month period according to law. Once it is legalized this document does not lose it's validity even if I decide to hold onto it for years before I actually use it. Having said that, you must understand that ONLY applies in a case where I have not returned to that country in the meantime which would allow for the possiblilty of the check being outdated. I would in this same situation also have to provide a second Atestado de Antecedentes Criminais issued by the Brazilian police to cover the period in Brazil.

Hope this clears up your doubts on the matter.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog

Dear William,

Thanks for that helpful insight.

So what it seems is that for marriage purpose, documents which do not require legalization, they need to be issued within 6 months prior to submitting to cartorios. But since a birth certificate from foreign country requires legalization from Brazilian consulate in that country, it doesn't need to be issued within 6 months prior to legalization.

Like what Vegas12 said... he needed his birth certificate for marriage and it was issued in 1998 which he still got legalized from Brazilian consulate in US.

Also just as you said about police check report, the law states that it needs to be "not older" than 6 months prior submitting for permanent residency. So thats a different matter from birth certificate.

Hope I am correct! :)

No, you still misunderstood. A birth certificate DOES NOT need to be 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate, only authenticated by the consulate of the country of issue. The birth certificate if used in Brazil (submitted to a Cartório) may not have been issued more than 6 months prior to use. This is often based on the authentication date from the consulate and also depends on the cartórios here, it seems many of them make up their own rules since there is no uniformity whatsoever.

A birth certificate is NOT necessary for visa applications and even if you do submit one it does not need to be 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate.

The document that DOES need to be 'legalized' is the Criminal Record Check. Usually the document itself states a period of validity and must be submitted very quickly to the Brazilian Consulate in the issue country for legalization. This document once 'legalized' remains valid indefinitely, provided that you have been out of the country of issue at the time it was issued, or left during the validity period. If you remained in the country following that, you could be required to provide another updated document.

As I pointed out earlier, if there was a prolonged delay in using the documents for whatever reason while you were in Brazil you will also require a Criminal Record Check conducted in this country.

These processes are so bureaucratic and such sparse information is given out it is no wonder you're confused. You are not alone, since many who work in cartórios and even Federal Police are confused and don't understand clearly.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

I am posting this to inform others you must be prepeared for long delays in paperwork processing. I had my marriage certificate authenticated in the US where we were married. She then returned to brazil and I followed her a year later. I thought I had all my documents in order, legalized, translated all ready.  I go to the Cartório Then I am told the document must be taken by a lawyer to the registrar to have it registered in Brazil, and I am told it would take 2 weeks (there are no problems with any of the documents submitted.) He presents the documents to them and now 2 weeks has grown to 60 days and still no answer about if the legal marriage in the United States is registered here. So this delays the next step for permanancy Today we will call them to see what is happening with the documents. This same process in the US takes about 15 minutes and In most cases you have the documents in your hand within a week. It seems a simple matter to do this and I have no concept as to why it takes so long it just does.

Hmmm... that makes sense. Its really so confusing. Even the consulates/embassies don't provide specific information either on their website/phone.

I actually need to submit my birth certificate to the cartorio for my marriage. But only after the Brazilian consulate in my country has authenticated it. I don't think the issue date of the certificate matters then (Its 2010 anyways). Only the authentication date matters as the cartorios need it submitted to them within 6 months of authentication.

Inter-country marriage seems the toughest thing on earth! :/

Hi ats_maverick,

No, you're still reading me wrong... it is YOUR country's consulate that has to authenticate and stamp the birth certificate, not the Brazilian Consulate in your country. Once that is done then you need to have it translated into Portuguese. The translation should only be done after the consular authentication since the translator should indicate the presence of the consular stamp and also translate the consular declaration of the document's authenticity. It is best to have the translation done by a "tradutor juramentado" in the same Brazilian state as the Cartório in which you will get married, but not absolutely necessary since they will accept anyone authorized in Brazil.

Got it now? If not I will try and explain it again.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

Hi John C,

Like Dorothy said, "I don't think we're in Kansas anymore Toto!" Everything takes forever here in Brazil.

Brazilians didn't invent bureaucracy, they just turned it into a SCIENCE. Unfortunately it doesn't seem to be an exact science, since it changes from city to city, state to state and even from cartório to cartório. It really looks like civil servants here in Brazil get to make up their own rules as they go along.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

Dear wjwoodward:

I have gone through your various posts in the forum and very much appreciate your support towards expats. I also very much apprciate your knowledge and experience in Brazil.

This is regarding above post of ats_maverick, with due respect I would like to submit that i have gone through similar phase. And as per my experience the requisited documents (Birth certificate)for cartorio needs to be authenticated at Brazilian Embassy in India.

However, it is advised that  "ats_maverick" should check with the local cartorio and get the list of documents and clarification for this case of foreigner's marriage.

Dear William,

The cartorio in Brazil says that for marriage, it needs my birth certificate authenticated by Brazilian Embassy IN India.
Also here is the link for the Brazilian embassy in India for legalization. … uments.xml

Its says... for any document to be valid in Brazil, it needs a Brazilian Consular stamp... and not the Indian consular (In brazil)... by the way, as you said Indian consular... which means Indian consular in Brazil because a country doesn't have any consular on its soil.

Actually the proper process is... first get the document authenticated by ministry of external affairs in a country, then only the Brazilian consulate in that country stamps it.

I hope I am not confused again! Haha. :)

Also... just if you are confusing... I am an Indian and possess Indian birth certificate... So I need to get it authenticated by Brazilian Consulate in India and not Indian consulate in Brazil. :)

Hi milanmech,

As I'm sure you are aware Brazil has different requirements, much more rigid, for citizens from India and Pakistan than they do for almost every other country in the world when it comes to visas. I have often complained about this and how unfair it is. However, having said that it is a country's sovereign right to do that, they all do.

I have been commenting from my own experience and the vast number of North American, European, UK and Asian members who have informed me of their experiences.

In my own case, for example (I'm Canadian) I had my birth certificate issued in Canada, while I was in Brazil and it was sent to me here. It was authenticated by the office of the Honorary Canadian Consul in Belo Horizonte, MG. Technically it should have been authenticated in Canada and most certainly NOT by an 'honorary' consul. It was translated also in Belo Horizonte by a 'tradutor juramentado' and due to the fact that their was much less bureaucracy at the cartório in São Paulo than Belo Horizonte I married in Sáo Paulo instead. This just points out that the rules are in no way uniform. My documents were, supposedly not acceptable in Minas Gerais, however they were perfectly fine in the State of São Paulo.

When dealing with the citizens of most countries, for the purposes of marriage in a cartório the birth certificate need only be authenticated in the consulate of the nation where the individual was born. It does not need to pass through the Brazilian Consulate there for legalization as would a Criminal Record Check.

My Certified Criminal Record Check was applied for from Brazil as well. I went to the Federal Police and requested that they fingerprint me on their standard form. That was stamped and signed by the officer who took my prints. I sent the form along with a covering letter to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police requesting the check. They mailed it to me in Brazil and I then mailed it back to the Consulado-Geral do Brasil in Toronto, Canada where it was legalized and mailed back to me in Brazil. Since for a number of reasons that I need not go into here, I did not apply for permanency at that time and retained the document. An immigrations lawyer advised me when I asked about it's validity told me that once 'legalized' by the Brazilian Consulate in Canada it remains valid forever (as long as I remained absent from Canada and no other entries could be made on a criminal record). The document was used in 2011 almost six years after it was issued and legalized, it was accepted by the Federal Police without any questions.

If you read the information page of any of the Consulate of DPF sites regarding visas they always put a 'caveat' at the end, stating that they can require additional documentation at any time. They almost in every case request other documents and have more bureaucracy for applicants from India and Pakistan. I hear constant complaints from members coming from those nations. Helping them takes up a great deal of my time here on the blog as you can well imagine.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

Hi again ats_maverick,

Sorry, you are quite correct. It is the Department of External Affairs in the country of issue that authenticates the birth certificates, diplomas, etc. I was using the term consular authorization quite losely (since it is in fact the Department of External Affairs) that operates Consulates in foreign nations.

If you read my previous reply to milanmech, you will see that even the rules that they Brazilian government requires aren't all necessarily 'written in stone'. If they were then my documents would never have been accepted. I got the right civil servants with their right home-made rules at the right time. LOL

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team


Thats quite a luck for you! :)

Well I got my tourist visa... but not without significant "brain hazards"!!! Here is how...

Once I applied, two days later they asked me for a hotel confirmation... I gave them... then two days later they again ask for an invitation letter from my friend as well as her notarized RG card!!! In fact, all these documents... hotel confirmation, invitation letter, RG card...  were not there in their website... so I just gave the standard documents needed for a visa. That was one hell of an experience for a week. I also had a Brazilian tourist visa issued in UK when I was there, they just asked the 3 standard documents as per their website and gave me a visa within 5 days. Looks like embassies in different country have different rules for SAME passport holders! :D

Thanks for all the clarifications!

The only issue that I have is that my birth certificate was issued in 2010 and I will be submitting it for MEA authentication followed by Brazilian embassy stamp. I hope the embassy doesn't ask me that my certificate was not issued within last 6 months!!!

As you said few posts earlier and I quote...
"There is only one exception, that I am aware of, to this rule  and that is that any document issued in a foreign nation, which therefore must be legalized by the Consulado-Geral do Brasil in the issuing nation. Once legalized by the Consulate such a document remains valid, apparently, forever."

You were referring to the rule of the certificate being issued in 6 months in foreign country. Also the link that I gave you two posts earlier about the "legalization at Brazilian embassy in India"... they haven't said anything about the 6 month rule.

I hope everything goes on smoothly.:rolleyes:

I was in Brazil in February where I got engaged to my Brazilian fiance. I'm going back in August and wondered what happens if we decide to get married while there. We already applied for the K-1 Visa. It's been accepted so now we just wait. If I were to get married there so his family could be present, could we still proceed with the K-1 and get married again here so my family could be presentor would our marriage be legal everywhere as soon as we marry? I know he can't come to the USA until everything is approved and I'd have to leave him behind for a while. I just want to know what's legal.

Hi Bameliss,

Sorry, but what's a K-1 Visa? Is that a US Tourist Visa?

The long and short of the whole situation is this. If you come to Brazil to get married in a Cartório (Registry) here it's a process that can take a couple of months or more, even if you have all the documents ready and completely in order upon arrival. The reason for this is that you first must apply at the Cartório for permission to marry (because you're a foreigner). Then the marriage banns are published in the DOU (Official Gazette), the permission is granted and also published and then you can get married. Once you've got the Marriage Certificate you can then immediately apply at the Policia Federal for your Permanent Visa. Having applied for the visa the foreign spouse will be permitted to remain in Brazil and even obtain a work permit until the process is completed, which can take up to two years or more. They're extremely slow here.

If you get married in the US (or any other country for that matter) you must then take your Marriage Certificate to the Consulado-Geral do Brasil nearest responsible for the region where your marriage took place (and presumably you reside) and register the marriage. You will be issued a Marriage Certificate from the Consular Cartório which is legal in Brazil. You then have two options; a) apply for the Permanent Visa there, in which case the foreign spouse will have to wait until the visa is actually issued OR b) come to Brazil on a Tourist Visa and apply for the Permanent Visa at the Policia Federal here, in this case the foreign spouse would be permitted to remain in Brazil until the process is completed.

Hope this answers most of your questions on the subject.

William James Woodward - Brazil Animator, Expat-blog Team

I would recomend you do not get married. The visa you have applied for would have to be changed to a I-130 if you get married in Brazil. If you have question go to the website called I am in the process for the I-130.I was married in Brazil this is a visa for green card in the USA Also your K-1 is also for a green card in the USA.

Thanks! The K-1 is the Finacee Visa for the USA. The plan it to live in the USA and get his green card. I'd like to end up in Brazil permanently but not yet. It's a beautiful place and so much warmer than where I live but we want to be sure that no matter where we go, we can both find employment quickly. If he has a green card before we go to Brazil we can come back if necessary. I should be able to keep my current job and he should be able to get work. It's easier for him to come here first because he speaks English very well. I need to learn Portuguese better before I'd ever be able to work there. I'm learning though!

A K1 visa is a visa especially used to bring the fiancee to the US for the express purpose of getting married it is valid for 90 days and the marriage must occur within that time there are requirements that the spouse must sign to agree he/she will provide support so that the person will not end up on the social protection programs in the US this requirement states you must sign an affidavit that promises you will provide monetary support for 10 years minimum and there are other requirements that must be adhered to that is she/he can not come here and then decide not to get married to circumvent normal immigration law of the US

If you got married there before coming to the US the K-1 visa would not be valid you would have to use a different visa a CR-1 that would require almost the same processing but as I understand it sometimes the CR-1 could take as long as a year or more to process It is far easier to get married in the US and have the documents legalized for use in Brazil.  The other recommendation is that you apply for permanent Visa here in the US and wait here while it is processed it takes a lot more time in Brazil to do the same thing, that is get a visitors visa converted to permanent to stay in Brazil there are all kind of hoops to go thru the bureaucracy in Brazil is a fine science and is very trying on your patience you will travel several times to the Federal Police where they will tell you that you need another document and of course it has to be notarized etc. and that after waiting in line 3-4 hours at the Federal Police to find it out.

Also to have your American Marriage Certificate recognized in Brazil you have to have it translated into Portuguese at a certified translator then notarized then submitted to the court for approval for the judge to order the Federal Police to Accept

My recommendations is marry in the US and get the permanent visa issued in the US, Then have a nice church wedding in Brazil just a celebration wedding for the family there, the real one having been performed in the US

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