CanI get married in a strictly verbal religious ceremony despite the fact thatI am still legally married to someone else?

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CanI get married in a strictly verbal religious ceremony despite the fact thatI am still legally married to someone else?

Asked on December 29, 2011 under Family Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Here is the general rule: you can not legally marry some one if you are legally married to some one else.  First, it is unclear what you mean by a "strictly verbal religious ceremony."  Second, those that officiate a religious ceremony are entrusted with the power of the city and state to officiate and thus make legal the marriage under the eyes of the law.  So any religious officiant that would conduct the ceremony knowing that you are legally married to another may be putting their license to conduct marriages in jeopardy.  Plus, you need to file a marriage license. Can't do that if you are not divorced.  Please take care of the first marriage before you do anything.  It really protects you here too. Good luck.


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