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Court Rejects Man’s Attempt to Claim an Invalid Marriage

What ministers who officiate weddings should know about their responsibilities ahead of a ceremony.


Key point 3-04. All states permit clergy to perform marriage ceremonies. However, some states permit only “ordained” or some other classification of clergy to perform marriage ceremonies. It is important for clergy to determine if they are legally authorized to perform marriages under applicable state law, and in addition to be aware of the legal qualifications for marriage and any license and reporting requirements prescribed by state law.

A man who in all respects lived with his wife for 27 years as husband and wife was barred from claiming that the marriage was invalid and therefore his scheme to avoid alimony payments to her did not work.


On October 25, 1991, a couple held a formal wedding ceremony in Jackson County, Missouri, attended by approximately 100 guests, including both the husband’s and wife’s families. At that time, the wife was 19 years old ...

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  • July 1, 2022

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