24 May 2009

New Random Answers to Random Search Terms

I am able to review the search terms that lead people to my website. Every now and then, a search term is particularly unusual or suggests an answer that doesn't, and perhaps shouldn't, appear in the website. In this irregular feature, I will randomly reply to these search terms. New Random Answers will reappear at unpredictable intervals.
These search terms are all about marriage and divorce.
(Remember, the law that's being applied here is the law of British Columbia, Canada, and the laws of one jurisdiction are often very different from the laws of the next.)
>> consequences of getting remarried without getting divorced
This one's easy enough: your new marriage won't be valid.

Without a divorce, any other marriage is technically bigamous under the Criminal Code yet also void under the common law.
>> how many years after separation are you considered divorced

Never. Until you get that divorce order you're still married.
No marriage is over until a court has made a divorce order, no matter how much time has passed since the spouses separated.

>> is it ungodly to attend a person's third marriage

I don't normally pronounce on religious issues, but this search term was too hard to pass up. If it is ungodly, perhaps you need to find a new religion if you're really prepared to put your religious scruples above your loyalty to a friend and a celebration of his or her happiness.

>> use of the divorce act for common law relationships canada
Also easy: none.

The federal Divorce Act only applies to people who are married to each other or who used to be married to each other. Unmarried couples, including couples who qualify as common-law, only have the provincial Family Relations Act and a few other laws to rely on in resolving the issues arising from their separation.

>> common law marriage divorce needed to end relationship

Common-law couples are not married; there is no such thing as a common-law marriage.

All "common-law" status means is that a couple qualify as "spouses" within the meaning of a particular law. Some laws, like the Family Relations Act and many other provincial laws, define a spouse as someone who is married or someone who has lived in a "marriage-like relationship" with another person for at least two years. Other laws have different definitions of spouse. Most federal laws, for example, only require that the couple have lived together for one year, while laws about welfare eligibility require an even briefer period of cohabitation.

Since common-law couples aren't married, there's no need for them to get a divorce to formally end their relationships. A common-law relationship is over when the couple separates. There's no magic to it, nor any need for a court order.

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