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Can I file charges for bigamy and was my marriage even valid?

Colorado Springs, CO |

I am currently going through a divorce. We moved in with one another in 2007 and were common law married and have resided with one another ever since until I filed for divorce. We married in 2010. After filing for a dissolution of marriage, I was talking to a friend and the topic of my husband's previous marriage came up. I realized at that time that my husband has never mentioned getting a divorce or having the marriage annulled. I went online and found a marriage license between him and his first wife (2004), but no decree of divorce. I called Arapahoe County and she did a state wide search and was also unable to come up with anything dealing with divorce between the two of them. Was my marriage even valid and can I file charges for the bigamy that I have been and am victim to?

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Attorney answers 1


If your husband was not divorced from his first wife then your marriage was invalid. You may need to change your petition for divorce to a petition for declaration of invalidity. You can obtain the same relief as a putative spouse as you would recieve in divorce.

You can file a bigamy compliant with police as your husband has committed a felony by representing that he was married to you while being married to someone else. However, these cases are rarely prosecuted criminally so you need to understand that the complaint may not go anywhere.

You can reach Harkess & Salter LLC at (303) 531-5380 or Stephen Harkess is an attorney licensed in the state and federal courts of Colorado. This answer is for general information only and does not create an attorney client relationship between Stephen Harkess or Harkess & Salter LLC and any person. You should schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your legal issues.