Incredible: New Jersey Marriage Law Leaves People in Awe

During my research on marriage laws in the northeastern states of the US, I was astonished to uncover the fact that a provision, which I had assumed was safeguarded in New Jersey, has actually been non-existent for nearly a century.

Like many residents of New Jersey, I used to believe that common law marriage was a recognized relationship in our state. However, it turns out that this is not the case. Common law marriage has not been legally recognized in New Jersey since the early 1900s. This revelation came as a surprise to me and many others who were under the impression that common law marriage was a valid option here in the Garden State.

Common Law Marriage in New Jersey

New Jersey stopped recognizing common law marriages in 1939. As a result, only those who established such relationships before that year are protected by the laws. It’s highly unlikely that you know anyone who has been common law married since the 1940s, right?

Cohabitation Laws in New Jersey

According to the DeTommaso Law Group, cohabitation in New Jersey is defined as a close personal relationship where a couple takes on the responsibilities and privileges typically associated with marriage or a civil union. However, it is important to note that there is no legal process to formalize the status of cohabitation. If a couple wishes to enjoy the legal benefits that come with being married, the only option is to actually get married.

Protecting your common law marriage in New Jersey

If you’re not keen on writing a check to the Garden State to demonstrate your commitment to your partner, there are alternative ways to safeguard both of you, no matter what happens. The foremost recommendation is to consult with a lawyer. Seeking legal guidance can assist you in establishing your estate planning, wills, and powers of attorney. By creating a legally binding plan that designates your partner as the person in charge of these matters, and vice versa, you can mitigate any potential complications if one of you were to pass away unexpectedly.

If either you or your partner were to pass away prematurely, there is a way to secure financial protection. By ensuring that both of you are named as beneficiaries on all of your personal accounts, you can have the assurance that you will be covered in such unfortunate circumstances.

If you’re not planning on getting married, it’s important to take steps to protect yourself in New Jersey since there is no concept of common law marriage.

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MBS Staff
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