If you're ready to take the title of "husband" or "wife," but aren't quite ready for wedding bells, then you may be interested in Colorado's common-law marriage.
What is Common Law Marriage in Colorado?
Common-law marriage is an alternative to ceremonial marriage or marriage through the court systems. Common-law marriage is a simple way to become married without all the "bells and whistles," and is still considered legally binding.
There are only three requirements for common-law marriage in Colorado.
- Both parties must be free to enter a marriage (AKA Single)
- Each person in the marriage must be eighteen or older, if they are between the ages of 16 to 18, appropriate parental or guardian consent must be received
- Both parties must mutually consent to marriage
And for those wondering, same-sex couples can also be married by common-law.
Is There A Time Requirement for Common Law Marriage in Colorado?
There is no time requirement to become married by common law in Colorado. There is also not a cohabitation requirement for common law marriage in the state of Colorado.
Do I Need Evidence of Common Law Marriage in Colorado?
While it may seem surprising, official verification of a common-law marriage isn't exactly available.
However, those who need documentation of the marriage can sign an affidavit of marriage in front of a notary. Keep in mind that the affidavit IS NOT a marriage license and will only be filed as a document with the County Clerk and Recorder in the county of residence.
How Do You End A Common Law Marriage in Colorado?
Unfortunately, while a common law marriage is easy to get into, it's not quite as simple to get out of.
If the courts determine you are in a true common law marriage, the only way to end the marriage is through a divorce, annulment, or death.
Even if you move to another state, your common law marriage is still valid and legal.