What Is Considered Common Law Marriage in Missouri?

What is considered common law marriage in Missouri? Whether a marriage is recognized by law or not depends on the intent of the couple. If the couple treats their relationship like a marriage, it probably is. However, the couple must still follow the rules of marriage and meet certain minimum requirements before a court can formally recognize the marriage. Those requirements include the age of the couple and their soundness of mind. Moreover, the couple cannot be legally married to another person, or any other common-law partner.

In addition to marriage licenses, Missouri also recognizes the solemnization of the union by a judge or a clergyman. The clergyman can be active or retired, but he must be in good standing in his church, synagogue, or other religious organization. A judge, on the other hand, must be a judge of a court of record. A municipal or city judge is not eligible to solemnize a marriage.

When two people decide to live together and eventually get married, they may choose to cohabitate or get married. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including financial reasons. Some couples simply want to test the waters before marrying. Others may want to save money on bills while living together. In any case, cohabitating couples do not receive all of the legal rights of marriage – the allocation of property and debts, spousal support, filing joint tax returns, and receiving certain employment benefits.

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