If my husband was still married when we were married but his first wife divorced him 5 years later, am I legally married to him now?

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If my husband was still married when we were married but his first wife divorced him 5 years later, am I legally married to him now?

Asked on November 25, 2011 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, no--you are not legally married to your husband. The reason is, no person may be married to more  than one spouse at a time; once someone is married to person A, then any subsequent or later marriages are null and void--they did not come into being, since the person could not marry B while married to A.

You can, of course, legally marry your husband now, since he is now divorced from his first wife. There are a number of different issues to deal with, however, resulting from this--for example, if you filed joint tax returns for the last several years, that was in error--so you are advised to seek legal counsel to help you straighten out this situation, both the consequnces of having believed yourselves to be married, and any administrative or bureacratic impediments to making sure your new marriage is properly legalized and recorded.


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