What makes you legally married in Texas?

Answered by Jason Smith

In Texas, there are specific criteria that must be met in order to establish a legal marriage. One way to be legally married in Texas is through a common law marriage, also known as an informal marriage. This type of marriage is recognized in Texas if certain requirements are met.

Firstly, both parties must agree to be married. This agreement does not have to be in writing or formalized in any specific way. It can be as simple as a verbal understanding or implied by the actions of the couple. This requirement emphasizes the importance of mutual consent between the parties involved.

Secondly, after the agreement to be married is made, the couple must live together in the state of Texas as husband and wife. This means that they must cohabitate and share a common residence. It is not enough for the couple to simply be in a romantic or intimate relationship; they must actually live together as a married couple.

Additionally, the couple must represent themselves to others as being married. This can be shown through their actions, such as wearing wedding rings, introducing each other as spouses, or filing joint tax returns. It is important to note that this representation to others is a crucial element in establishing a common law marriage in Texas.

It is worth mentioning that simply living together as a couple for a certain period of time does not automatically create a common law marriage in Texas. The agreement to be married and the representation of marriage to others are essential components that must be present.

To prove the existence of a common law marriage in Texas, evidence can be presented, such as joint bank accounts, shared property, or testimonies from friends and family who witnessed the couple holding themselves out as married. Each case is unique, and the evidence required may vary depending on the circumstances.

It is important to understand that common law marriage laws can be complex, and it is advisable to consult with a legal professional to fully understand your rights and obligations. Additionally, the requirements for a common law marriage may differ from state to state, so it is crucial to consult the specific laws of the relevant jurisdiction.

In conclusion, to be legally married in Texas, one way is through a common law marriage. This requires an agreement to be married, living together as husband and wife in the state, and representing themselves as married to others. It is important to gather evidence to prove these elements in order to establish a common law marriage in Texas.