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Common Law Marriage: How To Know If You Are Really Married In Texas


What is a common law marriage? How do you get a divorce when you were never married? When couples separate sometimes one of the partners feels like they may be entitled to the same rights as a spouse. This legal guide will explain how common law marriages work, and whether or not someone can claim that they have a common law marriage. Many couples in San Antonio, Texas establish common law marriages and require a divorce when they separate. This legal guide will help you understand whether or not you have established a this kind of marriage, and if you will need a divorce.

How Are Common Law Marriages Recognized?

Common Law marriages are recognized in the state of Texas, but how do you know if you’re really party to a common law marriage? These marriages are also sometimes called marriages without formalities or informal marriages. People in common law marriages sometimes say, “we didn’t get a courthouse marriage but we’re married.” Under section 2.401 of the Texas Family Code, courts recognize informal marriages when one of the following has occurred: 1) the parties sign a document called a Declaration of Marriage; or 2) the parties agree to be married and act upon the agreement.

How Do You Execute A Declaration Of Marriage?

Parties can have their informal marriage recognized by completing and signing a form called, Declaration and Registration of Informal Marriage. The form is produced by the Bureau of Vital Statistics and can be obtained at the Bexar County Clerk’s Office or the County Clerk’s Office in your county. Each party fills out a section of the form with the personal information requested. Then each party must sign the form in front of a notary declaring under oath the accuracy of the information provided.

I Did Not Sign A Declaration Of Marriage. Can I Still Have A Common Law Marriage?

If you do not sign a Declaration of Marriage, you still may have an informal marriage if ALL of the following are true: 1) you and your partner agree to be married; and 2) after you agree to be married you live together in the state of Texas as husband and wife; and 3) while still residing in the state of Texas, you and your spouse represent to others that you are married.

If I Have A Common Law Marriage What Does That Mean?

Generally, couples that meet these requirements require a divorce. If you are not sure whether you have a common law marriage or are in need of a divorce, call me at the Locke Law Group; I have litigated these kinds of cases. At The Locke Law Group, we can assist you with all family law issues.

For more information on Common Law Marriage In The State Of Texas, a free strategy session is your best next step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (210) 361-3113 today.