Common Law Marriage in Florida Prior to January 1, 1968
Common-law marriage in Florida is a union never formally registered with the State. In simple terms, no official ceremony occurred, or no marriage certificate was issued. Instead, parties agree to be married and would be a married couple by all outward appearances. It’s important to note, living together was not a requirement of common law marriage in Florida.
The laws treat a valid common law marriage in Florida as it would any other legal marriage. The parties are entitled to all the benefits and responsibilities of marriage. Additionally, dissolution of marriage would generally be the same as any other dissolution of marriage in Florida. Further, even alimony is available in a common-law divorce if the court feels it is appropriate under the circumstances.
Common Law Marriage in Florida After January 1, 1968
Unless married under Florida common law before January 1, 1968, Florida does not recognize marriages not formally registered with the state. Why is this important? Common law marriage is void in Florida. On an important note, Florida does recognize valid common law marriage from other states.
Common Law Marriage Outside Florida
Florida recognizes common law marriages that were created legally in another state.
Marriages formed in other states are entitled to the full faith and credit under the United States Constitution. Thus, under Article IV of the U.S. Constitution, all states must recognize a valid common law marriage entered into in another state.
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