You may be familiar with the term ‘bigamy,’ which means that you would marry a second spouse without divorcing the first one. What happens if you find yourself in this same situation, even if you didn’t try it? This practice is illegal on a federal level and your marriage could suffer because of it. Today we will talk about situations in which bigamy occur and how you can get past it.
Does My Spouse Have to be Legally Divorced?
When you marry your spouse even though they are still married to their previous spouse, this is seen as a bigamous relationship and it is not a valid one at that. You can only enter into a marriage when you are doing so in good faith. If the marriage was previously dissolved, this is the only way that you can move forward on a legal level. In California, same-sex marriage also applies to this, as in every other state. In any relationship where bigamy has occurred, you do not have a legal marriage.
The unfortunate fact is that, even if it occurs by accident, bigamy could still be charged under the law. In some states, the laws that dictate bigamy are felonies, which mean that you or your spouse could face serious fines or jail time. The only time that these laws don’t apply is when your previous spouse or your loved one’s previous spouse is presumed dead. If so, you or they are free to remarry without going through the divorce process. However, this must legally be established for you to move forward.
Are you married to somebody who was previously married and you wonder if your new marriage is legal? You may be worried about the penalties of bigamy and wonder how to protect your rights. It is a good idea to speak with an attorney during this time. At the Law Offices of Amy M. Montes, you can speak to us about every aspect of your case. We want to help you receive results you deserve in your case.