There are many people that are married, they just do not know it. They have no marriage license, they have never had the huge wedding of their dreams; nonetheless, they are married. “How is this possible?”- one might ask. Well, there is something in the United States that is called common law marriage. Common law marriage is the instance in which a couple can be married, even if they have never made their way down to city hall, or down that long, enchanted marriage aisle. The marriage laws in many states also state their claim in regards to common law marriage. For several states in the United States, common law marriage is regarded as just as much an important part of the marriage laws than the marriage laws that involve a formal wedding ceremony with wedding vows and a marriage license to officially and intentionally seal the deal.
1. As for those states that do lend itself to the legal institution of common law marriage, there are some requirements within the marriage laws that makes a couple married by way of common law marriage. Each state has their own criteria under their marriage laws that details what those requirements are in that particular state.
2. Some are surprised to learn that in their state of residence, the marriage laws lend their way to the couple being joined in a marital union through common law marriage. As you can very well imagine, some are surprised in a good way, and some are surprised in not so good of a way. Nevertheless, whether they find joy or distraught feelings from this fact, that is what the law dictates in many states for those unsuspecting lovers.
3. There are some benefits that the common law marriage gives to many couples. Some feel pleased with knowing that the marriage laws in their states were able to protect them in their legal relationship matters. Many find that with a common law marriage, they are able to obtain some of the same rights as couples that have formally taken the marriage oath. They find that the marriage laws in their state allows them to divide property in the same fashion that a married couple will. The marriage laws also give them rights in terms of spousal reports, as well. Additionally, if one of the partners passes away, the common law marriage laws gives them the same rights as a spouse with a marriage license would have. Many find themselves being very content with the common law marriage laws in their state, and find that they only make their unions even stronger.