My ex and I lived together for 1 year and before that off and on for 2. Do I have common law marriage rights?

Asked over 1 year ago - Houston, TX

I would like to know if I can take my ex to court to get half of our money and household goods and vehicles. Everything is in her name and everything we accumulated after we moved in together. I was working bringing in the income and she was not employed and actually never has been since I have known her. Do I fall under Texas common law marriage and if so what rights do I have. When I left I only got to leave with the clothes on my back. She wouldn't let me take anything, not even my toothbrush!

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Eric B. Dick


    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The elements for informal marriage (common law) are that you two resided together, portrayed that you two were married, and had an agreement to be married.

    Typically the evidence you use tax records, insurance documents, etc, where you two claimed to be married.

    Eric Dick, LL.M.; Office: 832-207-2007; Cell: 713-498-7969; Email:; website: www.... more
  2. Fran Brochstein

    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . You need to meet with a Houston attorney in person & discuss your case. Quite frankly, the other 2 attorneys outlined "common law" marriage for Texas. However, I cannot tell if you have a TX common law marriage. Therefore, I can't tell your next course of action.

    Good luck!

    Attorney Brochstein is donating her time and talent by answering questions to help those in need of legal... more
  3. Vicki Elaine Wiley

    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . For the elements to be met the couple must:
    Cohabitate (live together),
    Hold out as man & wife (call each other wife, husband to third parties), AND INTEND to be married.  
    Please consult a Family attorney in your area. Many, like myself, give a free initial consult and can give you clearer guidance based on all the specific facts of your case. Even if you did not have an informal marriage, you may pursue relief through civil courts, and/or court ordered mediation.

    This answer is general information which does not establish any attorney-client relationship between the person... more
  4. Sally S. Andrews


    Contributor Level 4

    Answered . Your own statement indicates there is no common law marriage. Although you lived together, you did not consider yourself married. Even if you were to consider yourself married, your ex will stress she did not so consider herself married. The third element, whether you held yourself out as married, is not indicated on the items you accumulated together. It also sounds that if you were to go into a Justice of the Peace (J.P.) Court there is nothing you can claim as solely belonging to you. Review your charge cards and chec book and see if you have any evidence of what may be owed back to you. If you choose to live with someone again, you may way to enter into a contractual agreement and take those items ;you solely pay for in your own name. You can represent yourself in Justice of the Peace court.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

27,834 answers this week

3,363 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

27,834 answers this week

3,363 attorneys answering