We all know that Valentine's Day is right around the corner, everyone is thinking about love and spending time with the person they enjoy most. But many of us here in the state of Texas don't really know the answer to this marriage related question. Is common law marriage recognized in the state of Texas? We will get more into the details but the easiest answer is yes, the state of Texas does recognize common law marriage.

What exactly is common law marriage? Essentially it allows couples in the state of Texas to unite as one without going through the whole ceremony or going to the court house to get a marriage license like most people do.

To Prove Common Law Marriage in Texas You Must...

You must both agree to be living as husband and wife, also you have to tell others that you are in fact married. Both people must be over the age of 18-years-old, not currently married to anyone else, and finally you must be unrelated to your common law spouse.

Things That Help Show You Have a Common Law Marriage

According to Divorce and Finance there are many things you can do to show intent to be in a common law marriage. Wearing rings is a very common act for people to show they are acting as a married couple also filing taxes together, having one address on a Christmas card, signing documents together (credit card applications), or adding your spouse to family accounts (gym memberships).

Common Law Divorce is NOT a Thing

If you want to make sure you avoid getting divorces, common law marriage might not be the best option for you. After living together in a common law marriage you must file paperwork like a normal divorce if the time comes or your partner passes away. Just because you decide the relationship is over doesn't mean the common law marriage just goes away too. This also means any property or money accrued while in a formal or informal marriage belongs to both of you under Texas law.

Is There a Specific Amount of Years You Have to Be Together?

In the state of Texas it doesn't take a specific amount of years living together to become common law married, it's more about acting as if you are married such as filling out paperwork together and using the same last name. Same sex couples in the state of Texas can join together in common law marriage.

Other Common Law Marriage Facts You Should Know in Texas

Not all states recognize common law marriages, so if you're moving to or from Texas you will want to do more research on the topic. Having kids together doesn't immediately indicate common law marriage. You can register as common law married at your county clerk if you wish to do so.

Just to be clear, I am not a lawyer just trying to help with some questions about common law marriage in the state of Texas. If you're dealing with any issues I would talk to a professional lawyer.

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