QUESTION

Can you get remarried if you are legally separated?

Asked on Mar 28th, 2011 on Child Custody - California
More details to this question:
I have been dating a woman for about a year and a half. She is legally separated from her husband, and has been for 5 years. The only reason they didn't get divorced was so that she could stay on his health plan. We want to get married, and she says that a legal separation is the same as a divorce, so legally we should be able to marry. However, I thought that people had to be completely divorced before they got remarried. Is it necessary for her to get a divorce, or can we get remarried if she is legally separated from her ex? Thank you.
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4 ANSWERS
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Answered on Mar 28th, 2011 at 11:13 PM
You are right and she is wrong. She cannot marry you without divorcing her husband. To do so would be bigamy.

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Answered on Mar 28th, 2011 at 10:54 PM
Under California law, a decree of legal separation is not the same as a dissolution of marriage. She is still married. She must file for a dissolution of marriage and go through the appropriate steps to be restored to the status of an unmarried person. It will be a minimum of six months. She should consult with an attorney to help guide her through all the steps and paperwork it will take to become unmarried. If the two of you marry before the divorce action is completed you would be in a bigamous relationship.

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Answered on Mar 28th, 2011 at 10:31 PM
A person who is legally separated cannot remarry. If you want to remarry, you must be divorced or widowed.

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Answered on Mar 28th, 2011 at 10:16 PM
You may NOT get married to a legally separated person. The legally separated person is still married, and must file a new case for Dissolution of Marriage, or the subsequent marriage will be unlawful, and void/voidable.

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