Notarial procedures in Colombia

Notarial procedures in Colombia

Notary offices are offices that exist for the purpose of supporting citizens in bureaucratic procedures and are attached to the Superintendence of Notaries and Registry. In Medellín there are a total of 31 notary offices, which are open to the public to serve users and perform everything from marriages, divorces and civil registrations. These offices have a variety of services that they can provide according to the need.

Among them are:

Civil Registry:

This document is essential in the life of every Colombian since it will contain his or her civil status, the link with his or her family and entitles the person to have rights and obligations. This document is required by law and its issuance is mandatory.

To process it, you will need:

Go to any registry office with the child for fingerprinting. In case the child is one month old or less, bring the certificate of live birth issued by the hospital. This process is free of charge.


This is a bureaucratic process whose function is to give veracity and confirmation to the documentation that is being presented. For example, explicitly recognizing that a signature is the correct one.

Extrajudicial declaration:

On some occasions, it will be necessary for people to freely and spontaneously approach a notary, under oath, to confirm some fact or to attest to a testimony or some fact that has occurred.

Purchase and sale contract:

In the event that you wish to sell or buy any property, whether in the name of a legal entity or an individual, you may go to any notary office to draw up the contract in exchange for the payment of the corresponding fees according to the notary office.

Declaration of insolvency:

In some exceptional cases, this procedure may be requested to cede payments to debtors, however, it is advisable to obtain technical information in this regard.


At the time of death of a family member, all his or her belongings are distributed among his or her heirs, but it is necessary, prior to the distribution, to carry out the succession. There are cases where the deceased did not make a will, it will still be necessary to go to the notary’s office, as long as everyone agrees with the will or the distribution, otherwise it will have to go before a judge.

Marriage Contracts:

Before getting married, if the spouses so wish, they may choose which assets will not be included or which will be included in the marital partnership or the patrimonial partnership. This is one of the most useful and at the same time little used notarial procedures in Colombia. If you want to know more about the subject, we invite you to read our blog on marriage contracts.

Separation of assets:

Once the marital partnership is liquidated, the distribution of the assets and fruits that were acquired through their relationship between the spouses will begin.


The sole purpose of this figure is to guarantee payment or compliance with an obligation.


Once the marital cohabitation has failed, the termination of the relationship may be requested. It is only possible to carry out the notarial process of divorce in Colombia if there is an agreement between the spouses, if there is no agreement, it will be necessary to carry it out before a family court.

Wills, inheritances and legacies:

The will is a text with which a person during his lifetime gives instructions and decides how to distribute his assets after his death.

Swap contract:

This is a barter contract, a thing and some money may be exchanged, but the value of the thing must be equivalent to 51% or more for which the exchange is to be made. Example: I decide to change a car model 2023, for another one that is of the year 2015, in that case I can demand that the other party add some money to the equation or ask for other things as part of the payment, but that money may not exceed 51% of the value of the car, in that case a contract of sale must be made.

Change of name:

This is one of the notarial procedures in Colombia that all Colombians have access to if they wish to change their name, or the way their name is written.

Allocation to family housing:

Also called double signature, if a married couple acquires a home, or a single person who has a common-law marriage, they will be able to carry out this procedure. This figure prevents liens from being placed on the real estate.


  • Copy of the deed of tradition.
  • Tax receipts for the home.
  • Identity documents of the spouses.
  • Certificate of tradition and freedom not older than 30 days.


In Colombia it is possible to make agreements between the parties in some situations, for example; the custody of a minor or the corresponding alimony. This process is known as conciliation and will be a requirement to advance the case before a judge on some occasions.


Or also called public deed, it is the execution of a document containing a declaration of will of one or more persons. This must be issued directly before a notary.


It is possible to execute a general power of attorney at a notary’s office, in case you wish to have broad representation for any business.


Notaries may carry out these proceedings at the request of an interested party or by judicial declaration, in order to sell a property to the highest bidder at public auction. The money collected will be used to pay any obligation the holder may have had.

Authorization to leave the country:

All minors with a living parent will need permission from the other parent if they are to leave the country without a parent. Notaries may perform this procedure or may also authenticate a private document for this purpose. It is also possible to do it through a public deed.

Issuance of copies and certificates:

You may, for example, be able to get a copy of your civil registry or marriage record or any publicly accessible document that is within that notary’s office.