Is my marriage valid if I got married 5 years ago but just found out that my husband’s ex-wife didn’t get the divorced finalize until a year later?

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Is my marriage valid if I got married 5 years ago but just found out that my husband’s ex-wife didn’t get the divorced finalize until a year later?

I would like to know if our marriage is valid? If not, what do I need to do to clear myself?

Asked on October 27, 2012 under Family Law, South Carolina

Answers:

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

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If your husband was still married at the time of your marriage  - and he sounds like he was - then you are not legally married.  The subsequent divorce does not change that.  You are not in trouble with the law.  You did not know and so you did nothing that would require you to "clear" yourself.  But I would speak with some one about your situation, especially if you own things together, have children, etc.  Good luck.  

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If your husband's divorce was not finalized until after you were married to him then under the laws of all states in this country technically your marriage is not valid because he was married when he married you. You did nothing wrong. I suggest that you consult with a family law attorney further about your situation.


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