What is a cohabiting couple in Spain?

A cohabiting couple is a legally recognized form of union in Spain that allows two individuals to live together and share their lives in a manner similar to marriage, but without getting married.
This provides certain legal rights and obligations for the couples, such as the right to inherit, survivor’s pension, and other benefits. It’s important to note that the laws and regulations regarding cohabiting couples can vary depending on the autonomous community in Spain, as some have the authority to regulate these types of unions.

Specific Requirements:

The exact requirements for registering a cohabiting couple can vary depending on the autonomous community, so it’s essential to consult with the competent authority in your area for specific information. In addition to the general requirements mentioned above, here are some additional aspects that may be necessary:

Cohabitation: Most autonomous communities require that cohabitation be continuous and stable for a minimum period, which can range from 1 to 5 years.
Joint declaration: In some regions, both members of the couple may be required to make a joint declaration before a notary or at the relevant registry, expressing their intention to form a cohabiting couple.
Specific documentation: In addition to personal identification documents, other documents such as certificates of residence showing that both members of the couple live at the same address may be required.


Required Documentation:

The documentation typically needed to register a cohabiting couple may include:

Personal identification documents (DNI or NIE) for both members of the couple.
Certificates of residence confirming that both individuals reside at the same address.
A sworn declaration of cohabitation, in which they affirm that they live together continuously and stably as a cohabiting couple.
In some cases, other documents such as certificates of civil status may be required.


Registration Process:

Once you have gathered the necessary documentation and met the specific requirements of your autonomous community, you will need to submit the application to the civil registry or the relevant competent authority. It’s important to ensure that the application is completed correctly and includes all the required documentation.

Interview or Joint Declaration:

Some autonomous communities may require an interview or a joint declaration of the couple before a notary or an authorized official. The purpose of this interview or declaration is to confirm the intention of both members to form a cohabiting couple.

Registration of the Cohabiting Couple:

Once the application has been approved, and all the necessary procedures have been completed, the cohabiting couple will be officially registered. At this point, you will receive a certificate confirming your status as a cohabiting couple.

Rights and Obligations:

Once registered, the cohabiting couple will have certain legal rights and obligations, which may include inheritance rights, survivor’s pension rights, and other benefits similar to those of marriage.
Remember that the timelines and requirements can vary significantly depending on the autonomous community in Spain, so it’s important to contact the local civil registry or competent authority to obtain accurate and up-to-date information on how to register a cohabiting couple in your specific area. Additionally, seeking legal advice is advisable if you have specific questions about your situation.