Does common-law marriage still exist in Michigan?
Before 1957, Michigan might have recognized cohabitation as a common-law marriage, which conferred the same rights as a traditional marriage. In 1957, Michigan abolished the common-law marriage, and now requires the parties to consent and have a license to have a valid marriage. The only way to be considered in a common-law marriage in Michigan is to have had a valid common-law marriage before to 1957, which still exists today, or Michigan will recognize a common-law marriage from a different state.
Does Michigan recognize same-sex marriages?
Michigan does not recognize same-sex marriages, and will not recognize a same-sex marriage from a different state. The state of Michigan will also not allow a same-sex couple to adopt a child together, but will allow one of the individuals in the relationship to adopt the child.
What rights do I have in a cohabitation arrangement?
Couples who live together, regardless of their sexual orientation may workout a cohabitation agreement, which may include pooling financial resources, personal and real property, child care costs, and other expenses. This agreement can be express meaning an oral or written agreement, or implicit in their pattern of behavior and conditions over time.
In Michigan, courts will generally will enforce such agreements made during the course of these relationships. Things can get tricky when the court requires certain independent evidence of such a cohabitation agreement, because the court will not recognize these relationships by law, because that would be recognizing a common-law marriage.
Do I file for divorce in a nontraditional relationship?
There is no need to file for a divorce, because a divorce is only needed if one is legally married. In Michigan, a dissolution of a cohabitation relationship is merely a civil matter and brought on the basis of contract law between the parties.