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2012: Can You Establish a Marriage in California if You Have Co-Habited in an Out of State Jursidiction Permitting Common Law Marriage?

There many issues related to marriages under different jurisdictions that might be considered as a problem if someone has shifted their residence from one state to another. San Diego Family Law Court recognizes as valid marriages which are entered into under the legal jurisdiction of that State and/or Country for purposes of marital status and to file for divorce. San Diego Divorce Court also recognizes valid divorces from any other Country and/or State as long as legal procedures followed for that jurisdiction. There are, as of the writing of this article, two countries in the world which do not divorce: Vatican City & Philippines. In San Diego, California, there are separate marriage laws and legalities, which may differ from other marriage acts, laws, and regulations in other jurisdictions. Out of all these issues, one question that may arise during a domestic case in San Diego, California, is whether a couple can marry in California if they have lived together in a place outside the jurisdiction of California where common-law marriages are permitted? The answer is “yes”. The Law Office of Doppelt and Forney, APLC has attorneys with experience in complete cases in San Diego Family Law Court. A consultation can be calendared by calling 800-769-4748,

It is not a common issue but does occur in San Diego under its jurisdiction. As per San Diego’s legal rules and regulations, common-law marriages are not recognized as legal marriages and are not considered valid. Under the Marvin Action or Marvin case also sometimes referred to as palimony, some actions can be brought, but they don’t apply to the family law courts. These actions would be commenced and litigated in San Diego Civil Court. In the Superior Court of San Diego, it is possible to bring a few particular actions under the palimony doctrine.

The issue related to the acceptance of a common-law marriage under the jurisdiction of San Diego, California, is not unheard of. Under the law for divorce and legal separation in California, the common law marriage is not recognized as valid marriage. The important legality to consider over here is that if a marriage is recognized as a normal and valid marriage by the Superior Court of San Diego in which a marriage license is issued and all of the required legalities are complied with in San Diego County, then it will be considered as valid all over San Diego and California. Also, in the United States, there are laws which allow for reciprocity of San Diego marriages in another jurisdictions Family Law Court. Whether a marriage in California would be considered valid in another country would be subject to that country’s laws and is different for each nation. Under the assumption that two people were married in any state in the U.S. or even outside the U.S., and that marriage was considered valid according to the jurisdiction of that particular state, the marriage is considered valid under the jurisdiction of San Diego as well.

But in the other case that if a marriage is not recognized and considered as valid under the jurisdiction of any state within or outside the U.S., then the proceedings are a bit different. In such a case, one has the legal option to file a ‘putative spouse’ in the county courthouses of San Diego in the neighbourhoods of San Diego, El Cajon, Chula Vista, or Vista. While doing so, one can still ensure that their rights for community property division of assets and debts are protected. If the Judge rules that you are a putative spouses, then you have all of the legal rights and duties as if you were validly married. This is a most complicated area of the law and fact driven.

It is quite out of the doubt that a marriage that is considered valid under the jurisprudence of the area where it was contracted can also be recognized and considered as valid by the jurisdiction of San Diego. Inquiries start where it becomes prominent that both parties live together and co-habited somewhere out of the state jurisdiction and acted as “husband and wife” and had a good faith belief that they were married. One example is where a spouse marries and the marriage ceremony meets the requirements of the jurisdiction [such as San Diego] but one of the spouses is already married. You cannot marry another person when you are already married. If the spouse who was not married and did not know the other spouse was married [and meets other requirements], then the putative spouse relief can be requested by the Court. Marriage and divorce date are the operative time periods crucial in determining the division of assets and debts. Marriage and divorce dates can significantly impact the outcomes of the case.

To investigate whether a marriage was considered valid in a particular state or not, attorneys must conduct a complete legal analysis of that State’s laws. Some of the considerations in the legal analysis include whether they pronounced as husband and wife to each other legally?

Doppelt and Forney, APLC, a San Diego Family Law Divorce Firm, does their bes to excel at providing an informative and accurate consultation about such matters related to marriage, divorce, or legal separation. Feel free to contact their office regarding the matters of the recognition of putative spouse by the San Diego Court or other family law matters such as custody and visitation and how to obtain parenting plans under California law.

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