Can someone explain "Common Law" to me in a, for lack of a better word, idiot way?

I've looked it up and none of what I've read makes any sense. like, how long do you have to be with someone before your considered common law(s)? i heard about it from the movie "baby mama". angie and carl were common laws. help?

5 Answers

  • wizjp
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Common-law marriage (or common law marriage), sometimes called de facto marriage, informal marriage or marriage by habit and repute, is a form of interpersonal status which is legally recognized in some jurisdictions as a marriage even though no legally recognized marriage ceremony is performed or civil marriage contract is entered into or the marriage registered in a civil registry. A common law marriage is legally binding in some jurisdictions but has no legal consequence in others. In some jurisdictions without true common law marriages (e.g. Hungary), the term "common law marriage" is used as a synonym for non-marital relationships such as domestic partnership or reciprocal beneficiaries relationship.

    The tradition of common-law marriage was affirmed by the United States Supreme Court in Meister v. Moore (96 U.S. 76 (1877)), which ruled that Michigan had not abolished common law marriage merely by producing a statute establishing rules for the solemnization of marriages. Since Michigan did not require marriages to be solemnized, the court held, the right to marry that existed at common law existed until state law affirmatively changed it. The Court held that in order to bar common-law marriage, a state's general marriage statute must indicate that no marriage would be valid unless the enumerated statutory requirements were followed.

    Common-law marriage can still be contracted in 11 states and the District of Columbia, can no longer be contracted in 26 states, and was never permitted in 13 states. The requirements for a common-law marriage to be validly contracted differ from state to state. Nevertheless, all states – including those that have abolished the contract of common-law marriage within their boundaries – recognize common-law marriages lawfully contracted in those jurisdictions that still permit it. The Navajo Nation allows common law marriage and allows its members to marry using tribal ceremonial processes as well as traditional processes.[8] Some U.S. states, however, such as Colorado, more rigorously enforce public policy exceptions to their general duty to recognize foreign state or foreign country marriages valid where entered into in the case of common law marriages.

    There is no such thing as "common-law divorce" – that is, you can't get out of a common-law marriage as easily as you can get into one. Only the contract of the marriage is irregular; everything else about the marriage is perfectly regular. People who marry per the old common law tradition must petition the appropriate court in their state for a dissolution of marriage.

    Texas, however, permits common law marriages to be effectively annulled, if not established legally within a specified time after the parties separate. Likewise, common law legal presumptions that a person who obtains a marriage license has obtained a divorce from all prior marriages before remarrying, in the absence of proof to the contrary, can have a similar practical effect.

    While a number of U.S. states recognize either same sex marriage, or domestic partnerships with the same legal incidents, as marriage, no U.S. state currently recognizes same sex common law marriages, and the Federal Defense of Marriage Act permits any state not to recognize same-sex marriages from another state.

  • You are asking specifically about common law marriage, as opposed to common law (judge made law).

    Generally speaking, if a man and a woman live together and represent to everyone that they are husband and wife (usually for some period of time) they they are considered legally married.

    The elements, for example, how long you have to live together, of common law marriage vary by jurisdiction (each state in the United States has its own rules, if you will, regarding common law marriages). The State of Nevada, for example, does not recognize common law marriages at all. In other words, a man and woman can live together forever in Nevada, and tell everyone that they are husband and wife, but that will never make them legally married. But if you have a legal common law marriage from another state, then it will be recognized in Nevada as a legal marriage.

    Source(s): I am a lawyer in Nevada.
  • 1 decade ago

    Common Law in terms of common law marriage, which is what your talking about it sounds like, is set by each state. So its going to vary.

    One of the purposes of it was that some people would cohabitate and live as if they were married but would not actually marry presumably because one of them was receiving some kind of welfare benefits that they would lose if they married. Other reasons would be difficulty with someone leaving an estate to a person they have lived with as if married for many years.

    As far as time as I said it varies, sometimes 6 months, sometimes a year, some it can be as soon as you establish cohabitation and begin to live as a couple. you will have to check your state.

    first answerer also mentions, as i thought, that some states do not recognize common law marriages.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Are you referring to marriage? If a couple shacks up continuously for two or more years, they will be considered to be in a 'common law' marriage or relationship, for the purposes of restitution in the case of a split up.

    So if the guy or gal splits after a two year liaison then common law allows for a 'palamony' lawsuit for goods or money just like a divorce settlement in a 'normal' marriage.

    So guys, if you're shacking with your squeeze, dump her before two years or the court will consider you a 'common law' marriage.

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  • 4 years ago

    I'm now not relatively certain what you imply.... "magickal coven"? "Works" may be a little indistinct. Since you may have referenced Wicca on your query, I can deliver you a little of a indistinct reply approximately how "my" Wiccan coven operates. It's a institution of folks that paintings in combination, worshiping and finding out in an initiatory culture. We celebration for trainings, rituals, and regularly for different others matters which can be extra only for a laugh however nonetheless situated in finding out or worship. Everyone is dependable for sharing what they recognize, however the coven chief (that could be me) is eventually in manipulate of curriculum. Everyone is dependable for taking manipulate in their possess skills, however greater levels are paired with cut back levels in a mentor/pupil courting to foster the educational system. The coven is administered as democratically as viable in phrases of accepting new individuals, scheduling, and plenty of different choices. Ultimately, the coven chief is dependable for preserving the concord of the coven and honoring the culture. This is solely how *my* coven operates. Other covens would possibly paintings in a equivalent type, or they could also be not anything like my possess.

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