Is there any way to live with someone and call them your spouse without becoming common-law married?

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Is there any way to live with someone and call them your spouse without becoming common-law married?

My wife and I live in Texas and are considering entering into a polyamorous
relationship with our roommate. Specifically, I would be in a relationship with
her as well as my wife. We’d prefer to be able to ‘get married’ via a ceremony
at home so that as far as we are concerned I have both of them as wives, but
we’re worried that we would become common-law married and it’s illegal to be
married to two different people at once. Is there any way for me to refer to
both of them publicly as my wives without becoming common-law married and as a
result breaking the law?

Asked on July 11, 2018 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You are actually looking at it backwards: it is not the case that you and this other woman would be married and so be in violation of the law; it's that because polygamy is not legal in this nation and you cannot marry person B while concurrently married to person A, the relationship with your roommate would not be considered a marriage and would be legally void. You can't be married to two women at once, even if you wanted to be; there would be no common law marriage to the 2nd woman.


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