Common-Law Marriage: Examples of Situations Where a Texas Court Found that No Common-Law Marriage Existed

1. No Agreement to be Married:

· Behavior that is consistent with courtship, such as holding hands and showing affection towards one another;

· Marriage proposal and giving of an engagement ring;

· Statements that parties were “trying out” their relationship and would later marry if everything worked out; and

· A promise by one person to the other to stay with them during illness.

2. No Holding Out:

· An indication on a lease agreement or other contract that you do not have a spouse;

· Evidence that only one person in the relationship ever stated to another that he or she was married;

· Evidence that a man only told a few of his friends that he was married and the woman never told anyone; and

· A woman stated upon being admitted to the hospital that she was single.

3. No Cohabitation/Living Together:

· Evidence that a man and woman never spent an entire night together;

· A man and woman never moved any personal property into the same residence;

· A man and woman never moved in together; and

· A man and woman living in the same house but sleeping in separate beds in separate rooms.

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