If I were living with my boyfriend for2years and want to file a joint return with him, will I legally be married to him?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I were living with my boyfriend for2years and want to file a joint return with him, will I legally be married to him?

Asked on September 24, 2011 under Family Law, South Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, no--filing a joint tax return does not make one married. Or more to the point: you can't file a joint tax return with someone UNLESS you have been legally married, and filing the tax return itself does not make you married, and nor does simply living together. You become married by getting a marriage license and being married by the appropriate officiator (e.g. judge, justice of the peace, clergy, etc.).

Your state, SC, is one of the very few that recognize "common law marriage," which can result in legal marital rights without a formal marriage. However, it's not always clear when two people are common law married, and it definite requires both of them to declare their intention to be married and to treat each other as spouses. You should consult with a family law attorney in your state to better understand common law marriage and how it might apply to you.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption