Marriage Laws United States Divorce Laws Divorce and Remarriage

Summary of State Laws on Divorce and Remarriage

Alabama

A final decree of divorce ends the marriage relationship as of the date of the decree. The remarriage of either party to the divorce to a third person is prohibited for 60 days following the decree. A divorce decree may also indicate whether the guilty party may ever remarry. However, if there is no such prohibition in the decree against the defendant's remarriage, any marriage of the defendant after 60 days following the decree is valid. A marriage contracted in Alabama before the end of the 60-day prohibited period or in violation of the prohibition against remarriage would be held to be void in Alabama. (See GN 00305.160D.) However, Alabama would hold to be valid a marriage entered into in another State within the 60-day period or contrary to the prohibition against the remarriage of the guilty party if the marriage met all statutory requirements of that second State and if the parties had not gone outside Alabama for the marriage in order to evade its prohibitions against remarriage. A marriage entered into in another State in contravention of the restrictions imposed by Alabama would be recognized as valid in other States, since such restrictions have no extraterritorial effect. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

Alaska

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

American Samoa

A divorce decree is final on rendition and there are no restrictions on remarriage.

Arizona

Prior to 7/23/66, divorced persons were prohibited from remarrying within 1 year of the decree of divorce. However, a marriage contracted during the prohibited period is not void. Such a marriage contracted in Arizona is voidable. However, a remarriage entered into in another State during the prohibited period would be recognized as valid in Arizona and in other States.

After 7/22/66, there are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Arkansas

Prior to 7/1/79, a divorce decree was effective from the date it was announced in "open court".

After 6/30/79, a divorce decree is final only after both a docket entry and a final decree have been entered. A divorce decree rendered during vacation of court does not become effective until entered on record.

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

California

Prior to 9/17/65, an interlocutory decree was first entered and at the expiration of 1 year (if there had been no appeal motion for the new trial or reversal of the interlocutory decree) a final decree could be entered.

From 9/17/65, through 12/31/69, (and for actions in which judgment was entered or a new trial granted between these dates) a final decree could be entered immediately after the interlocutory decree if 1 year had expired from the date of service of summons and complaint on the defendant spouse. A final decree of divorce severed the marital relationship and permitted either party to remarry. There was no waiting period after the entry of the final decree.

A marriage contracted with a third party after the interlocutory decree but before the final decree is void whether contracted in California or in another jurisdiction because the parties are not divorced until the entry of the final decree.

Since 1/1/70, (and for actions filed before that date with respect to issues as to which no interlocutory decree or judgment had been entered by that date) a final judgment dissolving the marriage may be entered, upon the motion of either party or the court, 6 months after the date of service of summons and complaint or appearance of the respondent. Such final judgment restores each party to the status of a single person and after its entry either may marry.

Colorado

Prior to 7/58, an interlocutory decree was first entered followed by a final decree after a lapse of 6 months. An interlocutory decree automatically became final 6 months after the entry of the interlocutory decree. During this 6-month period the parties were not capable of contracting a valid marriage in Colorado or in any other State, and no jurisdiction would recognize a marriage contracted within such period.

After 6/58, a decree of divorce rendered pursuant to suit filed after 6/58 is final when entered, and there is no restriction against remarriage to the parties thereafter.

Connecticut

A divorce decree is final immediately and there is no restriction against remarriage.

Delaware

Prior to 6/8/49, a statute provided for the entry of a decree nisi which became absolute at the expiration of 1 year, unless appealed from, or unless proceedings for review were pending, or unless the court before the expiration of the period otherwise ordered. The divorce did not become final until the entry of the final decree at the expiration of the 1-year period upon the plaintiff's application to the court. A remarriage entered into in Delaware or in any other State before the entry of the final decree would be held to be void by the courts of Delaware and of all other States.

From 6/8/49 through 7/4/74, a decree nisi became final after the expiration of 3 months from the date of entry upon application of the plaintiff for a decree absolute. During the 3-month period a remarriage contracted in Delaware or in any other State would be held to be void in Delaware and in all other jurisdictions.

After 7/4/74, a decree granting a petition for divorce is final when entered, subject to the right of appeal. However, an appeal, which must be filed within 30 days of judgment from a decree granting a divorce that does not challenge the finding that the marriage is irretrievably broken, does not delay the finality of the decree, and thus allows either of the parties to remarry pending appeal.

District of Columbia

From 8/7/35 through 9/28/65, a decree of divorce did not take effect until the expiration of 6 months after its date, or, if later, the final disposition of an appeal therefrom. Since the marriage relationship continued during that period, a remarriage entered into in that period is void in all jurisdictions, whether entered into in or out of the District of Columbia.

Beginning 9/29/65, a decree of divorce does not take effect until the time for noting an appeal has expired or, if such notice of appeal has been entered, the date of final disposition of the appeal. Prior to 7/29/70, notice of appeal must have been filed within 10 days from the date of the decree. Beginning 7/29/70, the appeal period is 30 days with provision for an additional 30 days upon a showing of excusable neglect. However, if no appeal is noted during the 60-day period, the divorce is effective after the 30-day period. Since the marriage relationship continues until the decree becomes effective, a remarriage entered into prior to that time is void in all jurisdictions, whether entered into in or out of the District of Columbia.

Florida

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Georgia

Prior to 1946, a total divorce granted the plaintiff in a divorce action would not free the defendant to remarry unless a final jury verdict authorizing the divorce specifically removed the defendant's disability to remarry.

From 1/28/46 to 3/17/60, a party to a Georgia divorce could not remarry during the lifetime of the former spouse unless (1) divorce was granted to such party, or (2) the divorce decree expressly authorized such person to remarry or such party's disability was removed by a jury in a court action brought for that purpose subsequent to the divorce. Remarriage in Georgia in violation of a prohibition is void; however, the prohibition has no extraterritorial effect. A remarriage in another jurisdiction in violation of the prohibition, valid under the law of that jurisdiction, will be recognized as valid by the courts of Georgia in the absence of evidence of lack of good faith revealing that the parties went to the other State for the purpose of evading the Georgia prohibition. If the parties, being residents of Georgia, remarried in another State for the purpose of evading the Georgia prohibition and with the intent of continuing to reside in Georgia, such remarriage would be held void by the courts of Georgia even though valid in the State where contracted.

From 1/27/46 to 3/6/56, in addition to the foregoing, divorces granted during this period did not terminate the marriage until 30 days after the decree; consequently, remarriages during the 30-day period were bigamous regardless of where contracted. After 3/5/56, divorces became effective upon rendition of the decree.

From 3/17/60 through 4/3/79, both parties have the right to remarry unless there is in the pleading a special prayer that the other party be placed under a disability and that party is placed under a disability by the jury or the judge.

Prior to 4/4/79, by statute, a defendant left under a disability may subsequently file an action requesting removal of the disability in the same court wherein the divorce was granted. The party has the right to remarry if the disability is removed.

Beginning 4/4/79, by statute, a divorce decree cannot be rendered that would place either party under a disability to remarry.

Guam

An interlocutory decree is first entered and at the expiration of 1 year if there has been no appeal, motion for a new trial or reversal of the interlocutory decree, a final decree is entered upon motion of either party or the court which severs the marital relationship and permits either to remarry. There is no waiting period after the entry of the final decree.

A marriage contracted with a third party after the interlocutory decree but before entry of a final decree is void, whether contracted in Guam or in another jurisdiction, because the parties are not divorced until the entry of the final decree.

Hawaii

Prior to 5/8/65, all divorce decrees became final within a month at a time fixed by the judge and the marriage was not terminated until the date fixed. A remarriage contracted before that time in Hawaii or elsewhere would be held to be void by the courts of Hawaii and for all other jurisdictions.

Except as provided below, after 5/7/65, a divorce decree becomes final at a date fixed by the court in the decree, but not more than 1 month from and after the date of the decree.

From 5/8/65 through 5/14/67, an interlocutory decree was entered if there was a minor child of the marriage living or in posse. When 1 year had expired after the entry of the interlocutory decree and no reconciliation between the parties had been effected, a final decree dissolving the marriage was entered by the court on its own motion or on the motion of either party. However, where all the children of the parties or any one of them reached majority, got married or were otherwise emancipated, or on the death of all the minor children or on the death of either party within 1 year after the entry of the interlocutory decree, the court entered the final decree effective as of the date of such event.

From 5/15/67 through 6/2/69, the court entered an interlocutory decree if there was a child of the parties under 18 or in posse. Such interlocutory decree was effective from and after such time as was fixed by the court in the decree. This was not earlier than the date of final hearing or later than one month after the date of the decree. When 1 year had expired after the date of the interlocutory decree and no reconciliation between the parties had been effected, a final decree dissolving the marriage was entered by the court on its own motion or on the motion of either party. However, when all of the children of the parties either attained age 18, got married, were otherwise emancipated or were adopted or died, or upon the death of either party within 1 year of the date of interlocutory decree, the court upon motion and proof of the facts entered the final decree effective as of the date of the event. If the parties were separated for more than 1 year under a decree of separation or of separate maintenance, the court did not enter an interlocutory decree.

After 6/2/69, the rules remain the same as in the preceding paragraph except that the period between the interlocutory decree and the final decree (referred to in the fourth sentence) and the period referred to in the last sentence were reduced to 6 months.

Idaho

Prior to 4/29/43, a statute on polygamous marriages provided that a subsequent marriage contracted by any person during the life of a former husband or wife, unless to that former husband or wife was illegal and void unless the former marriage had been annulled or dissolved more than 6 months. However, the courts have held that such a marriage contracted within Idaho within the 6-month period is voidable only and is valid without a court finding of fact and decree to that effect. A marriage entered into in another State within 6 months of the Idaho decree would be recognized as valid by the courts of Idaho and of all other States.

After 4/28/43, there is no publication against remarriage after a divorce.

Illinois

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Indiana

Where a divorce has been granted against a person who received no notice other than publication in a newspaper, such person may have the decree opened within 2 years. The divorce decree in such case would specify that it was unlawful for the party who obtained the divorce to remarry within the 2-year period. A marriage by the party who obtained the divorce, in violation of such prohibition in the divorce decree, or the other party, would be voidable, but not void. If the divorce is not set aside, the remarriage of either party becomes valid after the expiration of the 2-year period. If one of the parties dies within the 2-year period, the remarriage becomes valid as of the date of its inception, provided no property rights of the deceased party are involved. This restriction upon remarriage has no extraterritorial effect. Therefore, a remarriage entered into outside the State of Indiana within 2 years by a party so restricted, or the other party, would be held to be valid by the courts of Indiana and of other States.

There is no restriction upon the remarriage of either party to a divorce in which the summons was personally served on the defendant provided the decree does not specify that the party obtaining the divorce is restricted from remarrying.

Iowa

Prior to 7/1/76, Iowa law provided that neither party to a decree of dissolution of marriage (or divorce) shall remarry within one year from the date of filing of the decree unless permission to do so was granted by the court in such decree. However, a marriage entered into in Iowa within the restricted period without permission of the court is a misdemeanor only and the marriage is merely voidable and not void. A marriage entered into outside of Iowa within the restricted period is valid in the State of remarriage and in Iowa since the restriction has no extraterritorial effect.

After 7/1/76, there are no restrictions against remarriage following a decree of dissolution of marriage.

Kansas

Prior to 1/1/64, it was unlawful for either party to marry another person within 6 months from the date of the decree of the divorce. Any marriage entered into in Kansas in violation of this restriction is void. (See GN 00305.160D.) Likewise, a marriage entered into in another State for the purpose of evading the effect of this provision would also be held to be void by the courts of Kansas, if the parties in the marriage returned to reside in Kansas after the event. In other States, the remarriage outside Kansas would be recognized as valid even if the parties went outside of Kansas to enter into marriage for the express purpose of avoiding the prohibition. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

After 12/31/63, but prior to 6/30/65, the period following the date of decree of a Kansas divorce during which the parties thereto are prohibited from remarrying is 30 days. After 6/29/65, but prior to 7/1/75, the period of prohibition is 60 days after the entry of the decree. After 6/30/75, the period of prohibition is 30 days after the entry of the decree.

After 6/29/65, if an appeal is taken, the period of prohibition from remarrying continues until the clerk of the appropriate district court receives the final decision of the Supreme Court of Kansas with respect to the appeal. The validity of a remarriage in violation of this prohibition continues to be the same as above.

Kentucky

Prior to 6/16/66, and after 6/12/68, there was and is only one divorce decree, a final one.

After 6/15/66, and before 6/13/68, the law provided for both an interlocutory and a final decree of divorce. The final judgement of divorce could not be granted before the end of 60 days from the interlocutory decree, and until the final decree was granted, the marriage continued.

There are no restrictions against remarriage following an absolute divorce.

Louisiana

A remarriage prior to 7/29/70, by the female within 10 months of her divorce decree is voidable if contracted in the State of Louisiana, but if entered into in another State, the remarriage would be recognized as valid both by Louisiana and by the other State since the restriction has no extraterritorial effect.

Maine

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Maryland

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Massachusetts

If entered on or after 3/4/85, the divorce law provides for the granting of a decree nisi which does not become absolute so as to terminate the marriage until after the expiration of 90 days from the entry date unless the court otherwise orders. Decrees nisi entered prior to 3/4/85, did not become absolute so as to terminate the marriage until 6 months from entry unless the court otherwise ordered. During the period between the granting of the decree nisi and the date the decree becomes absolute the parties must remain married. A remarriage entered into during this period is therefore void in all States whether contracted within or outside Massachusetts.

However, by statute, Massachusetts provides that if the remarriage was ceremonial and entered into by one of the parties in good faith and without knowledge of such impediment and the parties continued to cohabit thereafter in Massachusetts as husband and wife after removal of the impediment, the marriage will be recognized as valid beginning at the point in time the impediment is removed.

Prior to 11/15/65, the libelee was prohibited from remarrying for 2 years after the divorce became absolute unless the libelant died earlier. A remarriage in such period is void in Massachusetts; however, if the remarriage was ceremonial and entered into by one of the parties in good faith and without knowledge of such impediment and they continued to cohabit thereafter as husband and wife in Massachusetts, the remarriage is validated upon expiration of the 2-year period. (See GN 00305.160D.)

Where the libelee was a resident of Massachusetts and went to another State to contract a marriage during the prohibited period, upon returning to Massachusetts that marriage is void in Massachusetts as though it had been contracted in Massachusetts. But if the libelee was not a resident of Massachusetts at the time of the remarriage and continued to reside outside of Massachusetts afterward, the marriage would be recognized as valid by Massachusetts.

A remarriage entered into before 11/15/65, in another State by the libelee within 2 years of the entry of the divorce decree would be held to be valid by States other than Massachusetts whether or not Massachusetts might hold it to be void since this restriction had no extraterritorial effect.

(However, see GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

After 11/14/65, there is no restriction on remarriage after the decree becomes final. Either party may marry again as if the other were dead. The removal of the 2-year bar against libelee marriages did not validate a purported marriage entered into in violation of the restriction before 11/15/65.

Michigan

In the absence of an express provision in the divorce decree, there is no waiting period following a final divorce during which both parties are prohibited from remarrying. The court can in its discretion specify in the decree that the guilty party shall not marry again within a time fixed by the court, but not to exceed 2 years from the time of the decree. However, a remarriage contracted within the waiting period specified by the court in a divorce decree would not be invalid even if the remarriage was contracted in the State of Michigan. Unless the judgment or decree of divorce expressly provides otherwise, a divorce judgment or decree is final when rendered.

After 10/10/47, but prior to 8/11/56, in any divorce case involving minor children under the age of 17, an interlocutory decree was first entered and the divorce did not become final until 6 months thereafter, except in a hardship case the court might specify a shorter period. Also, effective 10/1/53, upon the death of either party during the 6-month period, the decree was deemed final as of the date of death unless previously vacated or reversed. The marital relationship was not dissolved until the divorce decree became final. A remarriage before the decree became final, no matter where contracted, would therefore be held to be void by Michigan and by all other States.

Minnesota

Prior to 3/1/79, the law provides for a waiting period of 6 months following the granting of a divorce during which the parties cannot remarry. A remarriage entered into in Minnesota during this 6-month period is merely voidable, however, and not void until and unless set aside. A marriage contracted in another State in violation of this prohibition in the Minnesota statute would nevertheless be valid both in Minnesota and in the other State since the prohibition has no extraterritorial effect.

Effective 3/1/79, there are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree. A divorce decree is now final for all purposes when it is entered. This rule is subject to two exceptions: (1) If it has been contested in the divorce proceedings that the marriage is irretrievably broken (effective 3/1/79, this is the single ground for divorce), neither party may remarry before the time for appeal has expired. The appeal period is ninety days following entry of the decree. If the divorce proceeding is uncontested as to the grounds for divorce, either party may remarry before the time for appeal has expired. (2) If either party appeals the divorce decree on the ground that the other party is not entitled to a divorce, neither party may remarry pending disposition of the appeal. Unless there is evidence in file to the contrary, assume that neither of the exceptions applies and that both parties were free to marry before the expiration of the appeal period. A remarriage entered into in Minnesota during the appeal period or while an appeal is pending is merely voidable and not void until and unless set aside.

Mississippi

There is no period following the entry of a divorce decree during which both parties are prohibited from remarrying, although the decree may provide in the discretion of the court whether or when a party guilty of adultery shall marry again. Forward to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel any case in which there is a question as to the validity of a remarriage entered into in Mississippi in violation of such a prohibition.

A marriage entered into outside of Mississippi, by a person prohibited from marrying by a Mississippi divorce decree, would be held to be valid by the courts of another State and also by the courts of Mississippi, unless action had already been taken in Mississippi to declare such remarriage void.

Missouri

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Montana

Prior to 7/1/63 and after 1/1/68, there was and is no restriction against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Where a Montana resident or a person who was a party to an action for divorce in a Montana court contracts a marriage after 6/30/63, and prior to 1/2/68, less than 6 months after that person obtained a decree of divorce, such marriage shall be void from the date its nullity is declared by decree of a court of competent jurisdiction. In the absence of such decree, such remarriage contracted within 6 months after a decree of divorce of either party shall not be considered invalid because it was so contracted.

Nebraska

For the purposes of remarriage, a divorce decree dissolves the marital relationship six months after its rendered, or if appealed, upon disposition of appeal, if later. During this six-month period, the parties to the dissolution remain legally married. Remarriage entered into anywhere by either party within such time is void in all jurisdictions. Effective 9/9/95, the death of one of the parties to the dissolution prior to either of the above events renders the divorce decree final on the date of death.

Nevada

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

New Hampshire

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

New Jersey

Prior to 6/11/69, the statutes provided for the entry of a decree nisi which became final after the expiration of 3 months from the entry thereof unless prior to that time an appeal or proceeding for review had been taken and was pending, or the court had otherwise ordered. Prior to 9/15/48, a final decree had to be entered after the expiration of the 3-month period upon application of the successful party to the proceedings unless prior to that time there had been such an appeal or other review proceeding or court order. Since a marriage is not dissolved until the final decree is entered, a remarriage prior to that time would be held to be void by the courts of all jurisdictions, no matter where the marriage may have been contracted.

After 6/10/69, if the court after the hearing determines that the plaintiff or claimant is entitled to a judgment of divorce or nullity of marriage, a final judgment is entered which dissolves the marriage. Appeals are taken only from the final judgment.

There is no waiting period after the entry of the final divorce decree during which the parties to the divorce are prohibited from remarrying.

New Mexico

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

New York

Prior to 9/1/46, in an action for divorce the decision of the court or report of the reference was filed and an interlocutory decree was entered. In some instances the final judgment was entered automatically after the expiration of 3 months, and in other instances, action had to be taken (usually by the plaintiff) to have judgment entered within 30 days after the end of the 3-month period. If no such final judgment was entered, the marriage was never dissolved.

After 8/31/46, and prior to 6/16/68, the interlocutory decree automatically became final after the expiration of 3 months without the formal entry of judgment unless for cause the court ordered otherwise in the interim.

After 6/15/68, a divorce decree is effective immediately upon entry. An interlocutory decree entered between 3/16/68, and 6/15/68, became final on 6/16/68.

Where the final judgment dissolving a marriage is entered prior to 9/1/67, the innocent party may marry again without restriction, but the party guilty of adultery is prohibited from marrying again during the lifetime of the spouse unless permission of the court is obtained 3 years following the date of the final judgment. A marriage entered into in New York in violation of this prohibition without the court's permission is void. (See GN 00305.160D.1.). However, a second marriage entered into in a State outside of New York after entry of the final decree even if with the express purpose of evading the New York restriction would be recognized as valid by New York and by other States, since this restriction has no extraterritorial effect. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

Prior to 9/1/67, New York also prohibited the party guilty of adultery from remarrying in that State for a period of 3 years following the divorce, even though the divorce was granted in another State. A marriage in New York within 3 years following the divorce was void even though such marriage was not prohibited by the divorce decree or by the laws of the State in which granted. However, if the marriage was entered into in another State, this provision of New York law had no application.

After 8/31/67 (for benefits payable no earlier than 9/67), there are no restrictions on remarriage, whether the divorce decree was entered prior or subsequent to such date. However, this statute does not validate remarriages entered into prior to 9/1/67.

North Carolina

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

North Dakota

Neither party may marry except in accordance with the decree of the court granting the divorce. The court granting the divorce is obliged to specify in the decree whether either or both of the parties shall be permitted to marry, and if so, when. The court may modify a restriction in a decree at any time so as to permit one or both of the parties to marry. Should one of the parties to a divorce marry in violation of the restrictions imposed by the court, that remarriage would nevertheless be valid in North Dakota or in any other jurisdiction.

Ohio

There are no restrictions against remarriage following a divorce decree.

Oklahoma

The statute, while prohibiting a marriage of either party to a divorce for 6 months after the rendition of the decree, does not declare such marriage invalid. Any marriage contracted in Oklahoma within 6 months after a divorce decree was granted is valid unless set aside. A marriage entered into outside of Oklahoma within the 6-month period would be held to be voidable by the courts of Oklahoma and valid by the courts of other States as the prohibition has no extraterritorial effect.

Where there is no objection either in the motion for new trial or the petition in error to the granting of the divorce, a divorce decree is final and takes effect as of the date of rendition.

Where the final judgment dissolving a marriage was entered prior to 5/7/69, a divorce decree is considered effective upon the expiration of a six-month period after the date the final judgment was rendered, or in the case of an appeal, after such appeal has been determined.

Oregon

Prior to 8/13/65, the parties to a dissolved marriage were prohibited from remarrying for 6 months after the date of the decree, or if an appeal had been taken, until it was heard and disposed of, but in no case until the expiration of 6 months from the date of the decree.

A marriage entered into in Oregon or in another State within the 6-month period following a divorce was held to be void by the courts of Oregon (except for the situation noted in the following paragraph). A marriage contracted in violation of such prohibition was valid under the laws of other States since the Oregon divorce decree dissolved the marriage. (However, see GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

Certain marriages entered into within the 6-month period following a divorce decree have been validated periodically by curative legislation. Thus, marriages entered into prior to 2/19/41; 3/24/45; 4/21/47; 4/28/53; 1/1/59; and 1/1/65, have been legislatively declared valid if otherwise legal and regular, irrespective of whether the marriage was entered into in a State other than Oregon. However, these validating statutes have no effect in cases where one or both of the parties died prior to the effective date of the validating statute next succeeding the date of marriage; the respective enactment dates of the above-mentioned statutes being 6/14/41; 6/16/45; 7/5/47; 7/21/53; 4/14/59; and 5/14/65. Where a party to a marriage whose validity is in question because it was entered into within 6 months of a divorce decree died prior to 6/14/41, follow the procedures in GN 01010.800 ff. for submittal to the RCC.

Under the 1965 amendments to the Oregon Divorce Law, the 6-month period during which the parties are prohibited from remarrying following a divorce granted before 8/3/65, is reduced to 60 days. The validity of a remarriage in the prohibited period outside Oregon continues the same as above (except as stated in GN 00305.155). Where a remarriage occurred within 60 days of a divorce granted before 8/13/65 and a question arises involving the validity of the marriage in Oregon or in a State which has adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act, follow the procedures in GN 01010.800 ff. for possible submittal to the RCC.

Where the marriage occurred within 60 days of a divorce granted on or after 8/13/65, and the action was filed before 8/13/65, forward the case to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel.

Where an Oregon divorce is based upon a divorce action filed after 8/13/65, and before 8/1/81, the marital status of the parties is not affected until 60 days from the date of the decree or, if an appeal is taken, until the suit is determined on appeal, whichever is later. However, where either party dies within the 60-day period, the marriage relationship is terminated immediately before such death. Forward to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel any case in which there is a question whether another jurisdiction would give effect to the termination provision where one party died within 60 days of the divorce decree.

Certain marriages entered into before the expiration of 60 days from the date of a decree declaring a previous marriage of one or both of the contracting parties void or dissolved also have been validated periodically by curative legislation. Marriages contracted prior to 1/1/71; 1/1/73; and 7/31/81, which are in all other respects legal and regular, have been declared valid.

Effective 8/1/81, the waiting period during which the parties are prohibited from remarrying following a divorce is further reduced to 30 days.

Where the marriage occurred within 30 days of a divorce granted on or after 8/1/81, and the action was filed before 8/1/81, forward the case to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel.

Where an Oregon divorce is based upon a divorce action filed on or after 8/1/81, the marital status of the parties is not affected until 30 days from the date of the decree or, if an appeal is taken, until the suit is determined on appeal, whichever is later. However, where either party dies within the 30-day period, the marriage relationship is terminated immediately before the date of the death. Follow the procedures in GN 01010.800ff for submitting to the RCC questions about whether another jurisdiction would give effect to the termination provision where one party died within 30 days of the divorce decree.

Effective 10/23/99, a marriage relationship is terminated when the court signs the judgment of dissolution of marriage.

Pennsylvania

Prior to 4/2/80, the defendant in a divorce granted in Pennsylvania who had been guilty of adultery could not marry the co-respondent during the lifetime of his/her former spouse. A marriage in Pennsylvania in violation of this prohibition was void if the identity of this co-respondent appeared in the record or in the evidence of the divorce. Such a marriage was also void if entered into in another State for the purpose of evading the restriction (GN 00305.160D.). However, Pennsylvania would recognize as valid a marriage entered into in good faith in another State if the party who remarried had established a domicile in the other State.

A marriage entered into in another State in violation of the prohibition in a Pennsylvania divorce decree would, following the general rule, be recognized as valid by the courts of States other than Pennsylvania, without regard to whether or not the parties left Pennsylvania for the marriage in order to evade the effect of the Pennsylvania statute. (However, see GN 00305.155) for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

Effective 4/2/80, the provision restricting remarriage in a divorce granted for adultery was repealed. Thus, any remarriage entered into in Pennsylvania (regardless of when the prior divorce was granted or when the remarriage took place) that was in violation of this provision is considered a valid, legal marriage.

Puerto Rico

The divorce laws do not impose any restrictions on remarriage after divorce. However, the marriage laws prohibit the parties to an adultery who have been convicted by final judgment from marrying each other for 5 years after such judgment.

Prior to 6/2/76, the marriage law provided that the following persons (among others not divorced) are incapacitated to contract marriage: a woman whose marriage had been declared null or had been dissolved within a period of 301 days from the date of nullity or dissolution.

When a marriage had been contracted by an individual incapacitated under this statute, the Puerto Rican Code stated that the marriage was null and void. However, the courts of Puerto Rico have held that a marriage entered into by a woman within 301 days of her divorce is at the most voidable; and where the question did not arise until after the expiration of the 301-day period, and it could be shown that no child was born during that period, the marriage would be held to be valid.

A marriage entered into in Puerto Rico in violation of the prohibition against the marriage of the parties to an adultery would not be void unless at least one of the parties had been convicted of adultery and the other party sufficiently identified at that proceeding.

No cases requiring a determination as to the validity of a marriage entered into outside Puerto Rico in contravention of these restrictions have come to our attention. However, following the general rule that such prohibitions have no extraterritorial effect, it may be presumed that such a marriage entered into outside of Puerto Rico would be held to be valid by the courts of Puerto Rico and of other States. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

Effective 6/2/76, a woman seeking to remarry during the 301-day period (the date of nullity or dissolution of the prior marriage to the date of the present marriage) must present a form to an authorized person stating whether or not she is pregnant. A marriage performed in contravention of this requirement is voidable.

Rhode Island

Prior to 6/5/76, a divorce decree did not become final by operation of statute but only upon entry of the final decree upon the expiration of at least 6 months after the trial and decision. A remarriage in Rhode Island or in any other jurisdiction during that 6 months, is void in all States because the parties to the divorce are still husband and wife. There is no period following the final decree during which the parties are prohibited from remarrying.

After 6/4/76, a divorce decree does not become final by operation of statute but only upon entry of final decree upon the expiration of at least 3 months after the trial and decision. A remarriage in Rhode Island or any other jurisdiction during that 3 months is void in all States because the parties to the divorce are still husband and wife. There is no period following the final decree during which the parties are prohibited from remarrying.

South Carolina

Prior to 4/15/49, the constitution prohibited the granting of absolute divorces.

After 4/14/49, a final divorce decree terminates the marriage; there is no interlocutory decree and no period during which the parties to the divorce are prohibited from remarrying.

South Dakota

The party guilty of adultery cannot marry any person except the former spouse until the death of such spouse. A marriage in South Dakota in violation of such restriction would be held valid but voidable in South Dakota. A marriage entered into in a State outside of South Dakota would be recognized as valid by South Dakota and by other States.

Tennessee

Prior to 1/30/70, the defendant in a divorce action who had been guilty of adultery could not marry the person with whom he/she had committed adultery during the lifetime of the former spouse. A marriage in Tennessee or in another State by a person so prohibited from remarrying would be held to be void by the courts of Tennessee. (See GN 00305.160D.) This restriction had no extraterritorial effect; therefore, a marriage entered into in a State outside of Tennessee in violation of such prohibition would be considered valid by other States. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

After 1/29/70, there are no restrictions against remarriage. Generally a divorce decree does not become effective until it is recorded in the minutes of the court.

Texas

Prior to 1/1/70, where a divorce was granted upon the ground of cruel treatment, neither party could marry another person for a period of 12 months.

A marriage in Texas in violation of this prohibition was voidable. A marriage entered into outside the State of Texas during the 12-month period would be recognized as valid by the courts of Texas and of other States.

After 12/31/69, neither party to a divorce may marry a third party for a period of 6 months following the date the divorce is decreed. However, this prohibition may be waived by the court granting the divorce for good cause shown either at the time of the divorce decree or thereafter as to either or both of the parties. The divorced parties may marry each other at any time. A marriage to a third party in Texas within the 6-month prohibited period is voidable.

Effective 1/1/74, if either party to a divorce marries a third party within the 30-day period immediately following the date the divorce is decreed, such a marriage is voidable and subject to annulment on the suit of a party to the marriage if the suit is brought within one year from the date of the marriage. However, the parties divorced may marry each other at any time.

Utah

Prior to 5/13/69, a statute provides that a decree of divorce shall become absolute and terminate a marriage at the expiration of 6 months (3 months if decree granted after 5/13/57) from the date of entry; if an appeal is taken, the marriage terminates when the decree is affirmed. A remarriage anywhere within such periods is void in Utah and all other States.

After 5/12/69, a statute permits a decree of divorce to become absolute immediately upon the date of entry, or to continue interlocutory until a waiting period as long as 6 months from the signing and entry of the decree has elapsed, in the discretion of the court for good cause shown.

Vermont

Prior to 4/8/70, the guilty party in a divorce action was prohibited from marrying anyone except the former spouse for a period of 2 years after the divorce decree became final, unless the spouse died before that time. A marriage in Vermont within the waiting period (depending upon when the divorce was granted) is void. A marriage entered into in another State by a person under such restriction would be held to be valid by the courts of other States and also of Vermont. If, however, the marriage was entered into in another State by residents of Vermont for the purpose of evading the restriction, Vermont would hold such a marriage to be void. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

On or after 4/8/70, it is provided that in a suit for divorce, a decree nisi is first entered which does not become final until 3 months from its entry, although the court which grants the decree may fix an earlier date upon which it may become absolute. A remarriage any time within 3 months of the decree nisi (unless the court sets a shorter date) would be held to be void in all jurisdictions since the marriage has not been dissolved.

On or after 4/8/70, there is no restriction against remarriage following a divorce decree which has become final (whether rendered before, on, or after 4/8/70). Where remarriage occurred prior to 4/8/70, and both parties thereto did not survive until that date, validity of remarriage must be determined under former law. If remarriage occurred before 4/8/70, and both parties survived until said date, forward the case to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel.

Virginia

Prior to 1/13/20, the only restriction in the divorce law which prohibited either party to a divorce granted for a cause arising subsequent to the date of the marriage from remarrying was that the court in the decree could impose on the guilty party a prohibition against remarriage during the life of the other party. If such a party entered into a subsequent marriage in Virginia without having that part of the divorce decree revoked, the marriage would be void. In case of a remarriage entered into in another State, the prohibition would have no extraterritorial effect and would be valid in the other State and in Virginia. However, Virginia would deem the remarriage void if the guilty party left Virginia for the purpose of remarrying in violation of the decree, and intended to return and subsequently did return to Virginia. (See GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

After 1/12/20, the restrictions against the remarriage of the party guilty of adultery remained in the law and a provision was added that upon the rendition of a divorce decree neither party shall be permitted to remarry for 6 months (4 months effective 6/24/44) from the date of the decree. A remarriage by one party to another person, entered into in Virginia or elsewhere within the 6 months (or 4 months) prohibited time period while the other party to the divorce was still alive, is void in Virginia and in all other jurisdictions. (Exception: A remarriage entered into outside Virginia within the prohibited time and which is otherwise valid, would be regarded as valid in New York.)

However, marriages entered into in violation of any prohibition against remarriage in a divorce granted for a cause arising subsequent to marriage, are deemed valid ab initio if (1) the parties resided together as husband and wife until such time as one of the parties died prior to 7/1/60, or (2) the parties have continued to reside together as husband and wife until 7/1/60. In the case of (1) above, the marriage is validated ab initio effective 6/27/60. In the case of (2) above, the marriage is validated ab initio effective 7/1/60. (This applies where the remarriage occurred in Virginia and the parties were domiciled at all times thereafter in Virginia. In all other cases, submit to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel for an opinion as to whether the particular marriage would be considered validated.)

After 6/26/60, there is only a final decree which becomes effective when granted unless the court decrees that neither party shall remarry pending the perfecting of an appeal. Also, the provisions for a court-imposed restriction against the remarriage of a party guilty of adultery continue in effect.

Virgin Islands

The remarriage of the parties to a divorce in this jurisdiction is prohibited until the action is heard and determined on appeal, or if no appeal is made, until the expiration of the appeal time of 30 days. After 1/27/45, a marriage contracted within the prohibited period would be void regardless of where it was celebrated. Forward to the PC for possible submittal to the chief counsel any case in which a remarriage took place prior to expiration of this prohibited period, and before 1/28/45.

Washington

Before 6/8/49, an interlocutory decree was first entered. A final decree of divorce was not entered until the expiration of 6 months from the date of the interlocutory decree upon the motion of either party, or if an appeal was taken, not until the judgment on that appeal was rendered. A remarriage entered into anywhere before the entry of the final decree or the judgment on appeal was void in all jurisdictions, since during such time the prior marriage was still in existence. There was no waiting period after the entry of final decree or judgment on appeal.

After 6/7/49, there is only a final decree of divorce which becomes effective when granted unless an interlocutory decree was entered on or before 6/8/49.

West Virginia

Before 4/1/69, both parties to a divorce suit were prohibited from remarrying within 60 days from the date of a decree of divorce. In addition, the court might further prohibit the guilty party from remarrying within 1 year. A remarriage entered into in West Virginia in violation of these prohibitions is void. A marriage entered into in another State in contravention of the prohibitions would be valid under the laws of other States, but if the validity of such a marriage is subsequently questioned in the courts of West Virginia, its courts will refuse to recognize it on the grounds that such recognition would be contrary to the public policy of West Virginia. (Also, see GN 00305.155 for validity of remarriage in States which have adopted the Uniform Marriage Evasion Act.)

After 3/31/69, there is no restriction upon remarriage as to either party after divorce.

Wisconsin

Before 4/12/72, a divorce became final one year after it was granted. The date of the granting of the decree, usually the date of the trial, commenced the running of the 1-year period which must elapse before the divorce became final. A remarriage in any State prior to the expiration of that 1-year is void, because the decree granted has the same effect as a decree nisi and does not sever the marital ties. (If either party dies within the 1-year period indicated above, the marriage is deemed dissolved by final decree immediately before such death.) (See last paragraph of entry for change of position.)

After 4/11/72, and before 2/1/78, the date of the granting of the decree, usually the date of the trial, commenced the running of the 6-month period which must elapse before the divorce became final. This applied to a divorce decree resulting from the service of a summons upon the defendant before 2/1/78. A remarriage in any State prior to the expiration of that 6 months is voidable. (If either party dies within the 6-month period indicated above, the marriage is deemed dissolved by final decree immediately before such death.)

On or after 2/1/78, a divorce decree resulting from the service of a summons upon the defendant is final immediately, except that a 6-month waiting period during which the parties must not marry will be established in each decree. Any marriage in violation of this prohibition is voidable.

All marriages referred to under the former laws as being void are now considered voidable. Any remarriages can become valid if the marriage is entered into by one of the parties in good faith and if the parties continue to live together following the removal of the impediment; i.e., the expiration of the waiting period. This is a change of position effective 12/27/78.

Wyoming

There is no restriction upon remarriage after divorce.