Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia: everything you need to know

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On 1/4/2017, the Registry of Stable Couples of Catalonia began to operate, which is very important in order to obtain, for example, the community family card in certain cases. We explain in detail all its characteristics.

What is a stable couple
According to the Catalan Civil Code, a stable couple is one where there is a community of life analogous to marriage by a couple, whether its members are of the same or different sex. It is what is also known as a couple or, in some Latin American countries, as a concubinage. In order to be recognized for certain legal purposes, you must register in the Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia.

When it is considered that a stable couple exists
It suffices that one of the following requirements be met:
1- That the coexistence has lasted at least two uninterrupted years. OR
2- If they have a child in common. OR
3- That they grant a public document, before a notary, constituting the stable couple.

Who can not constitute a stable couple
1- Those who are married and not separated in fact (that is, although married, but if they are separated in fact can constitute a stable couple).
2- Minors (18 years old) not emancipated.
3- Those who are already part of another stable couple.
4- Those who have a family connection in a straight line (parents, children, grandparents) or collateral line in the second degree (siblings).

How is the existence of a stable couple legally proven?
In addition to fulfilling any of the three requirements mentioned above, in order for it to have effects before the State bodies, it must be registered in the Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia.

How to register the stable couple in the Registry
1- The first thing is to submit an application, by both partners, either in person (preferably by appointment), in the offices of the Department of Justice of Catalonia (or in its territorial headquarters) or online ( in this case it is necessary to have an electronic certificate).

2- Documents to be contributed:
-For all cases: identity document and literal birth certificate.
In addition, depending on the case:
-If you have more than two years of coexistence, historical certificate of cohabitation (enumeration).
-When you have a child in common, literal certificate of birth of the child.
-If the declaration has been made before a notary, the latter must be requested to send the respective document.

3- Deadlines
There is no expiration term to request registration, it can be done at any time. Once presented, it is assumed that the Registry of Stable Couples of Catalonia must issue an express resolution declaring the registration, and notify it to the interested parties within the two months following the presentation.

What happens if you already registered the stable couple in a town hall
Up to now, couple’s registers were functioning in some 30 Catalan town halls (although not in Barcelona, for example). The regulations require in these cases to register the couple again in the Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia. Although it does not say anything about what effects this municipal registry has so far, our criterion is that its effects are valid until the entry into force of the new regional registry. However, it is insisted, it is necessary to process the registration again, now before the new entity.

And the acts before a notary?
They are also valid. However, it is advisable to register them in the Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia, for which we will indicate below.

The impact of the Registry of Stable Couples of Catalonia in the community immigration regime
In accordance with Royal Decree 240/2007, Spanish citizens and EU citizens residing in Spain have the right to live with certain relatives. And the latter, consequently, to obtain the so-called resident card of a relative of the community, which authorizes them to reside and work in Spain, initially for 5 years, and then 10 years, renewable for equal periods.

One of these relatives is the couple with whom they maintain a union analogous to the conjugal one, registered in a public registry established for that purpose in a Member State of the European Union or in a State party to the European Economic Area.
Or if a time of marital cohabitation of at least one continuous year is accredited.

Until now, if the foreigner lived in a town hall where there had been no registration of de facto couples, he would have to prove to the immigration office a coexistence of at least one year (with the certificate of registration of cohabitation), even if he had the notarized document .

Now, if the notarized document is granted and registered in the Register of Stable Couples of Catalonia, in theory it would not be necessary to wait for that year. Therefore it is understood that access to the river is facilitated

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