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I Donít![Canada-'automatically married by the state, against their will']
Slate ^ | 24 May 2012 | Lili Boisvert

Posted on 05/29/2012 7:43:21 AM PDT by Theoria

How a bizarre legal case involving a mysterious billionaire could force 1.2 million Canadians to be married, against their will.

Somewhere in North America, there is a place where little girls don’t give the slightest thought to what kind of wedding dress they’ll wear one day. A place where young men have never heard the expression: “why buy the cow when you can have the milk for free?”—because the milk is always free. A place where no one asks an unmarried couple expecting a baby if they’re getting hitched.

This place is the province of Quebec. The French language spoken here is no guarantee for romance. Couples are practical, and lovers treasure their individuality. Quebec has become one of the least marrying places in the world, thanks to the institution known as “de facto spouses,” But now, thanks to a bizarre legal case entangling a Quebec billionaire and his de facto spouse ,  the freedom to un-marry is under threat. More than 1 million Quebecois in this kind of relationship may soon be automatically married by the state, against their will.

De facto spouses are defined by Quebec’s law as two people who have been living together for a year or more without being married and who check the “couple” box on their income tax statement form. Quebec’s lawmakers have deliberately chosen not to give de facto couples the same rights and responsibilities that married couples have under the Law of Quebec, to preserve the freedom of choice.

(Excerpt) Read more at slate.com ...


TOPICS: Canada; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: canada; defactospouses; marriage; quebec
When you choose to go down the rabbit hole, ya never know where it will lead.
1 posted on 05/29/2012 7:43:28 AM PDT by Theoria
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To: Theoria

We already have “common law” wife in the US.


2 posted on 05/29/2012 7:49:29 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Theoria

Doesn’t the U.S. have “common law marriage” that is similar? By common law... I thought if a couple lived together for a period of time, they were seen as “married” in the eyes of the State.


3 posted on 05/29/2012 7:50:05 AM PDT by momtothree
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To: Theoria

“When you choose to go down the rabbit hole, ya never know where it will lead.”

True, but you know what will be all over the floor.

;-(


4 posted on 05/29/2012 7:50:05 AM PDT by GladesGuru (In a society predicated upon freedom, it is necessary to examine principles."...the public interest)
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To: cuban leaf

Sorry, CL! I asked the question and we must have posted a second or two apart.


5 posted on 05/29/2012 7:51:11 AM PDT by momtothree
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To: momtothree

Some states do. But, ya know that in advance, not after.


6 posted on 05/29/2012 7:53:24 AM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: momtothree

I saw it as a “great minds think alike” sort of thing. ;-)


7 posted on 05/29/2012 8:02:59 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: cuban leaf; momtothree

Not in Connecticut, I don’t know about other states.


8 posted on 05/29/2012 8:03:19 AM PDT by muir_redwoods (I like Obamacare because Granny signed the will and I need the cash)
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To: muir_redwoods; cuban leaf; momtothree

Not in Delaware either - although now they do perform same sex “civil unions.”


9 posted on 05/29/2012 8:09:04 AM PDT by Gabz (Democrats for Voldemort.)
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To: muir_redwoods

Looks like some states and not others.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common-law_marriage_in_the_United_States


10 posted on 05/29/2012 8:09:52 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: cuban leaf

Not in every state.


11 posted on 05/29/2012 8:11:47 AM PDT by kalee (The offenses we give, we write in the dust; Those we take, we engrave in marble. J Huett 1658)
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To: kalee

—Not in every state.—

Well, to be fair, my comment was like saying “it is legal to purchase alcohol in the US”, even thought I, personally, live in a dry county.

;-)


12 posted on 05/29/2012 8:15:06 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: momtothree

“common law marriage” was outlawed by statute in virtually every (if not every) US jurisdiction in the early to mid 20th century. The theory was that CLM created more problems than it solved. In particular, problems of bigamy, divorce, inheritance, probate, custody of children, rape (remember that in some jurisdictions it was, until recently, legally impossible for a husband to rape his wife), and evidence (marital privilege in some places permits spouses to exclude each other’s testimony). Where the state has an efficient licensing system, the theory goes, we don’t need to spend a lot of effort to determine whether people are married or not.


13 posted on 05/29/2012 8:16:49 AM PDT by FateAmenableToChange
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To: Theoria

My non-lawyer’s understanding of common law marriage in TX:

It exists precisely to protect the woman, and any children, from the Eric/Lola scenario. If a couple cohabits, and holds themselves out to the public to be married, then they are married in the sight of the law.

I think the “holds themselves out to the public” standard is higher than the average “shacked up briefly and a child resulted”.


14 posted on 05/29/2012 8:20:06 AM PDT by RedElement
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To: Theoria

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: “Defacto married” women were not eligible for alimony. A Canadian court has decreed that your unmarried “defacto” wife may be awarded alimony.


15 posted on 05/29/2012 8:24:15 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (If I can't be persuasive, I at least hope to be fun.)
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To: PapaBear3625

Thank you for clearing that up.


16 posted on 05/29/2012 8:39:25 AM PDT by Tax-chick (I love you for your perspicacity.)
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To: Theoria
De facto spouses are defined by Quebec’s law as two people who have been living together for a year or more without being married and who check the “couple” box on their income tax statement form.

They can't have it both ways. They must either choose to be a couple or not to be a couple.

17 posted on 05/29/2012 9:37:47 AM PDT by JimRed (Excising a cancer before it kills us waters the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS, NOW AND FOREVER!)
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To: cuban leaf
We already have “common law” wife in the US.

Only in states that have not changed the common law we inherited from England at the time of Independence.

Actually, common law marriage was a wise institution that legally recognized the fact that marriage is neither a state nor a religious institution, but a natural institution in human society, that stable cohabitation by a man and a woman was the key feature of that institution and that the state (or Crown) had an interest in keeping such relationships stable (mostly for the sake of any children engendered). It is precisely the arrogation to the state of the purported authority to redefine non-state social institutions that is the most odious feature of the drive for "same-sex marriage". It's actually to see Quebec catching up with the Anglosphere in creating an analogue of common law marriage.

18 posted on 05/29/2012 10:03:11 AM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know. . .)
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To: Theoria

Does not sound too different at all from the Common Law Marriage we have here in Pennsylvania and in many of the other 13 original colonies.


19 posted on 05/29/2012 10:09:15 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: FateAmenableToChange

Common law marriage is recognized in Colorado. It is often adjudicated “after the fact” when one of the couple wants a divorce or child custody or some other dispute occurs. The key is they held themselves out in public as a married couple.


20 posted on 05/29/2012 10:51:40 AM PDT by colorado tanker
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To: colorado tanker
The key is they held themselves out in public as a married couple.

Believe that was the key in the case of Lee Marvin and Michelle Triola Marvin as well.

21 posted on 05/29/2012 10:56:48 AM PDT by Fast Moving Angel (A moral wrong is not a civil right: No religious sanction of an irreligious act.)
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To: Fast Moving Angel

The Lee Marvin case was even more interesting. California does not recognize common law marriage. Triola sued for so-called “palimony” on a contract theory, that Marvin had promised to support her for life. The court found insufficient evidence of such a contract, but the concept is now recognized in California law.


22 posted on 05/29/2012 11:09:22 AM PDT by colorado tanker
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To: momtothree
Doesn’t the U.S. have “common law marriage” that is similar? By common law... I thought if a couple lived together for a period of time, they were seen as “married” in the eyes of the State.

It depends on what state you live in, I know in Texas we have "common law" or as the state calls it, "informal marriage".

My admin had to go through it when she and her "husband" split up. One of the things that helped her, was they had never co-mingled funds and his name was on everything.

It was a mess.

23 posted on 05/29/2012 11:11:15 AM PDT by RikaStrom (Pray for Obama - Psalm 109:8 "Let his days be few; and let another take his place of leadership.")
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To: FateAmenableToChange

Evidently not.

“Under Texas law there is no required period of time of cohabitation and an informal marriage can occur if the couple lives together one day if the other elements, (an agreement to be married and holding out as married to the public) have also occurred.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common-law_marriage_in_the_United_States#Texas


24 posted on 05/29/2012 11:15:37 AM PDT by ansel12 (Massachusetts Governors, where the GOP now goes for it's Presidential candidates.)
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To: muir_redwoods

Most states used to recognize common law marriage but have formally abandoned “common law” anything and don’t recognize common law marriage anymore.


25 posted on 05/29/2012 11:28:45 AM PDT by arthurus ( Read Henry hazlitt's "Economics In One Lesson")
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To: ansel12

I’ll stick with “virtually every” state then. Or at least most. Lots. Whatever. I couldn’t remember if it was still alive in KY, TX, TN, WV. CO surprised me, but that’s cool.

I should also clarify that despite its alleged drawbacks, I am a fan of common law marriage in that it reduces the state involvement in the family.


26 posted on 05/29/2012 12:15:32 PM PDT by FateAmenableToChange
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To: FateAmenableToChange
“common law marriage” was outlawed by statute in virtually every (if not every) US jurisdiction in the early to mid 20th century. The theory was that CLM created more problems than it solved. In particular, problems of bigamy, divorce, inheritance, probate, custody of children, rape (remember that in some jurisdictions it was, until recently, legally impossible for a husband to rape his wife), and evidence (marital privilege in some places permits spouses to exclude each other’s testimony). Where the state has an efficient licensing system, the theory goes, we don’t need to spend a lot of effort to determine whether people are married or not.

LOL, well, not quite. Common law anything is not recognized by statute anything - they're two completely different legal environments. But they don't necessarily cancel each other out. Common law principles such as common law marriage still hold perfectly fine - it's just that administrative law (statutes) don't recognize it in their "courts." That's not the same as it being "outlawed." It's not criminal, it's just not legally acknowledged within administrative jurisdiction.

Then again, neither are natural human beings acting in their personal capacities.

So there's that little issue, too.

27 posted on 05/29/2012 12:20:07 PM PDT by Talisker (He who commands, must obey.)
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To: FateAmenableToChange

In any state if you want to become common law married, you can go to Texas, sign in as man and wife with intent to be married, and your home state has to recognize it.

Here is a ruling on common law marriage.

“The tradition of common law marriage was affirmed by the Supreme Court of the United States in Meister v. Moore (96 U.S. 76 (1877)), which ruled that Michigan had not abolished common law marriage merely by producing a statute establishing rules for the solemnization of marriages. Since Michigan did not require marriages to be solemnized, the court held, the right to marry that existed at common law existed until state law affirmatively changed it. The Court held that in order to bar common law marriage, a state’s general marriage statute must indicate that no marriage would be valid unless the enumerated statutory requirements were followed.”

It is still legal in these states “A common law marriage can still be contracted in the District of Columbia and ten states: Alabama, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Montana, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, and Texas included.[21][22] Additionally, New Hampshire law provides for posthumous recognition of common law marriage in probate cases; and Utah will recognize a common law marriage if the parties get a judicial decree to the effect a common law-marriage exists or existed between them. Otherwise, common law marriages can no longer be contracted in any of the other states. All states, however, recognize a common law marriage that was validly contracted in another state under the principles of comity and their choice of law/conflict of laws rules.”


28 posted on 05/29/2012 12:39:47 PM PDT by ansel12 (Massachusetts Governors, where the GOP now goes for it's Presidential candidates.)
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