Civil partnership (“Unión de hecho” in Spanish) and Marriage

If you wish to get married in Spain, we can help you with all the paperwork required, guiding you throughout all the steps of the process.

However, not all people living together, however, decide to get married. If you are not looking to get married, but are in a serious and dedicated relationship, here is some legal information to keep in mind.

A civil partnership is a legal relationship, which can be registered by two people of the same or different gender. Registering a civil partnership will give your relationship legal recognition. This will give you added legal rights in Spain.

Therefore, if you live with someone, but are not married, it is a good idea to consider a Civil partnership’s agreement. This is an especially good idea if you own a property together or have children – it will provide a solid legal grounding should the relationship dissolve.  

The law regulating registration of a “Union  de Hecho” in the Comunidad Valenciana is contained in Act 5/2012, de 15 October. ( Note that every Spanish district may have different laws with regard to partnerships.

What are the requirements to apply for Civil Unions?

There are about 100 local Register Offices for live-in couples in Spain. They have different provisions and several steps needed for their registration. However, in general these are some of the requirements:

  • Be an opposite-sex couple or same-sex couple 
  • You shall be stably cohabiting or living together in a de facto relationship
  • You shall have common interests to maintain a family life together
  • You and your partner should be of legal age or emancipated minors
  • You must be legally capable
  • You must register with the town district where the Register Office is located (“padrón in Spanish”)

What are the benefits of Civil Partnership?

Failing to register as Civil Partners can have dire consequences for Expats who are or become resident in the Comunidad Valenciana. An unmarried couple can register as a “pareja de hecho” and benefit from the same reliefs given to a married couple.

In fact, those who register their partnership gain access to a number of legal rights. Notably, these include rights to survivor pensions, recognition for immigration purposes, equal treatment for tax purposes, including important inheritance benefits, greater protection from domestic violence, recognition for immigration purposes, life insurance recognition, etc.

For example, failing to register in civil partnership means that in the event of the death of one non-registered Civil Partner, the direct financial consequences could be disastrous for the surviving Partner. Why? Because he would be regarded as unmarried and the survivor would be treated as an unrelated stranger and subject to the highest rates of Inheritance Tax, as it has already happened to a good client of our Firm recently.

When the client came to our office after the death of his partner, he discovered that he had to pay almost 20.000 euros in inheritance tax. If they had been married or registered as civil partners, the amount of tax would have been dramatically reduced.

Our Law firm is specialized in dealing with Civil Partner registration, and we will be delighted to help you throughout the entire application process in the most efficient way. We would therefore be more than happy to provide you with a free very competitive quotation as well as to attend any of your future legal needs.

Contact us

For immediate advice, call us now on (+44) 20 70 97 58 24 or (+34) 687 88 88 73 or email us

Civil partnerships