(Closed) Common Law Marriage?

posted 8 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
2417 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

Common law marriage doesn’t exist in the state that I live in any more. If you are not actually married, you aren’t considered to be common law.

Common law marriage is a couple that have been together for a certain number of years. In PA, it used to be 7 years and then you were considered common law married. As I said, it doesn’t exist here anymore. I’m not sure about the rest of the US.

Post # 4
5422 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 2012

@AB Bride:  i see it as strictly a legal term.  where i live it used to be recognized, a couple years ago they did away with it.

Post # 5
14492 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

While NE doesn’t have it any longer,  the legal term here was Common Law Marriage.   Common Law didn’t take affect unless you had lived together for 7 or more years without being married.

Post # 6
963 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

Common law marriage is a mostly outdated legal concept. The idea is that if you meet certain requirements (live together for X years, have kids, refer to yourself as married), the state will consider you married even if you didn’t do the legal marriage process. A common misconception is that, in states the recognize common law marriage, living together for X years makes you married. But both partners actually have to agree to claim they’re married for the common law marriage to be valid.

Post # 7
4500 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

View original reply
@VAwife:  Exactly. In most states now, there is no legally recognized common law marriage. It’s mostly a myth… but it still does exist in some states. 

Post # 8
2065 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

It still exists in Texas. You can either register it or just consider yourself married if you meet 3 tests (decide to be married, live together, and present yourself as married to others). Once you meet those 3 requirements you’re common law married according to our state (and can also file income taxes jointly).

Post # 10
2959 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

In most states, it no longer exists. In a few, yes.


Post # 11
2390 posts
Buzzing bee

It could be a regional thing. 

Post # 12
556 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

In a few states, common law marriage still exists, and for all intents and purposes the couple is considered to be married in the eyes of the law if they present themselves as such. This also means that instead of merely breaking up, a couple would also need to get a divorce, even though they never signed a contract to be married.

Post # 13
923 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

It still exists in the state I live in.  You have to have the capacity to enter into a marriage (you have to legally be able to get married), you have to present yourself as a married couple (use the same last name, tell people you’re husband and wife, or file taxes together), and you have to consumate the marriage.  I’ve actually known someone who had a common law marriage  by these terms and when she and her partner”broke up” had to file for divorce even though there was no marriage certificate on file anywhere before she could get married in the more traditional way.

Post # 14
4753 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

it’s not slang. its just a term it’s the same thing as “common law relationship” although I really don’t know a single person who has ever ran around saying “I’m in a common law relationship” nor “I’m in a common law marriage” people just don’t say it- but it really is an interchangeable phrase.

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