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Marriage by special power of attorney

In CELIG we have united in marriage many same-sex couples who have traveled from abroad for this purpose. It is possible that one of the parties may not be able to come in person to the celebration of their marriage. For these cases, the Family Code currently allows marriage by special power of attorney.

Article 30 of the same law states: «The marriage may be celebrated by means of a very special power of attorney that is recorded in a public deed and that expresses the name and general information of the person with whom the marriage is to be celebrated; but the other party must always be present at the celebration of the marriage in person.

There will be no marriage if at the time of the celebration the power of attorney was already legally revoked».

Although the Constitutional Chamber of Costa Rica has ruled that visa and/or permanent residence applications cannot be rejected under the argument that they are based on a marriage by special power of attorney (as currently allowed by law), this could change as of October 1, 2024. On that date the Family Procedural Code will enter into force, which expressly repeals the figure of marriage by special power of attorney.

CELIG provides specialized services to the LGBTQI+ community. For more information or to schedule an appointment with us, please call us at 4001-6439 or email us at

We are located in San Jose, Barrio Escalante.

M.Sc. Ana Isabel Sibaja Rojas

CELIG – Center for Equal Opportunity Litigation