Pareja de hecho in Spain

Pareja de hecho in Spain

Cohabitation (amancebamiento) was a felony in Spain until 1978. Before that year living as man and wife without being lawfully married In Spain was forbidden.

Twenty years later, Pareja de hecho in Spain concept appears. In 1998 Cataluña approved a law establishing the possibility to register as couple without being married in 1998. T

Then Aragon, Navarra, Madrid, Valencia and Baleares, little by little all the Comunidades Autonomas have their own register, requirements and procedures to become a Pareja de Hecho.  

Also, some cities or municipios has their own Pareja de hecho rule. As we explained in others articles, Spain is divided into 17 Comunidades Autonomas and 2 ciudades autonomas, also the territory is divided into 52 provinces. Therefore we have plenty differences.

But what a Pareja de Hecho is?

Pareja de hecho in Spain

Due to the historical fact explained above people who want to be together have to get married first. However, until 2005, people from the same sex cannot get married according to Codigo Civil, despite the fact they were a couple, they did not have the same rights.

Pareja de hecho in Spain

Spanish society changed completely during the ’80, Pareja de hecho in Spain is an outcome of that period. Two people who don’t want to get married but want live together.

Since 2005, once the marriage includes homosexuals and once you can divorce unilaterally, Courts established (sentencia Tribunal Supremo de 12 de septiembre de 2005) that Pareja de hecho are people who do not want to get married included all the consequences (advantages and disadvantages).

Each Comunidad Autonoma has diffent laws for Pareja de hecho, even different names: Convivencia y uniones de hecho, Parejas estables, Uniones estables, etc.

Each of these laws for register a Pareja de hecho grants different rights and duties and the requirements to become a Pareja de Hecho are also different.

In Comunidad de Madrid, you become a Pareja de hecho, once it is register and this law will only apply that registered couples.

Like in marriage: minors, relatives, married people or already in another Pareja de hecho, cannot be Pareja de Hecho.

Basic documents you will need to register a Pareja de hecho in Spain

Each law may ask for other documents too. Unless there is a legal instrument providing exemption from that obligation, all foreign public documents must be legalised in order to be valid in Spain and sworn translated.

From both of you:

  • Single certificate: Depending on your civil status you may need other documents.
  • Empadronamiento or proofs of you were living (sometimes they even ask living together).


If are in this situation already or you are about to start the procedure and want to prepare your application properly, you can contact us and in the consultation we can study your case.

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