Myth on “Common Law Marriages” in California

By: Wallin & Klarich

Many times, we come into contact with people who are under the impression that upon a break-up with their long-time companion, they have rights similar to what a husband or wife would have at the time of their divorce. For example, people sometimes feel that even though they were never married to their long-time companion, California’s community property laws and/or family laws apply to them. However, this is simply not true, at least in California. Just living together, even as “alleged” husband and wife, does not equate to a “legal marriage.” Simply put, there is no such thing as a common law marriage in California.
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Unless a couple has entered into a valid marriage or registered domestic partnership, at the time of their separation, neither individual is entitled to support and property rights, or remedies as provided for by the California Family Code. Although in this situation, either party and/or co-habitat may have remedies through a general civil action.

We hope that this clears the myth about “common law marriages” in California. If you or a loved one needs assistance any other family law issue please call Wallin and Klarich at any time! Wallin and Klarich has been in the business of helping people with their family law matters for over 30 years and we would like to help you with yours!
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Call Wallin and Klarich today 1-888-749-7428 as we have a team of highly skilled family law attorneys ready to take your call 7 days week, 24 hours a day! Visti us at

Posted In: Family Law