Is an international marriage valid?

UPDATED: Jun 29, 2012

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Is an international marriage valid?

I am a USA citizen who married a Brazilian citizen in Bolivia 5 years ago. The long distance relationship only lasted a year, we never lived together, nothing. For the past 4 years I lost complete contact with her last I knew she moved back to Brazil. I have been in a relationship for the past 3 years and we want to marry. Is that marriage that as done in Bolivia legally valid in the US since no paperwork was ever done in the US? If so, how do I go about disolving that marriage so I can legally remarry when I have no contact with the other party?

Asked on June 29, 2012 under Family Law, Illinois


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in the United States IF you were validly married in another country, then that marriage is legally recognized in the United States.

If you wish to marry the person who you are now with, you need to locate the person who you are married to and serve her with a summons and complaint to dissolve your marriage. You can file this petition in the county and state in this country where you reside. I suggest that you consult further with a family law attorney to assist you in getting your marriage from your Bolivian wife dissolved.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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