Can a person remarry in Rhode Island without getting an official divorce decree, on the pretext of having an official foreign divorce issued?
December 06, 2016
By: Christopher A. Pearsall, RI Divorce and Family Law Attorney
QUESTION: Can a person remarry in Rhode Island without getting an official divorce decree, on the pretext of having an official foreign divorce issued?
ANSWER: Dear Writer, I’m not sure what you mean by “on the pretext of having an official foreign divorce issued.”
A “pretext” is when you give one reason for doing something when you actually have another reason for doing it. For example, “The police obtained a warrant to search Mr. Jones’ house from the judge on the pretext that stolen merchandise would be found there when they actually wanted the search warrant to search the house for drugs.”
If you meant your question to state, can you remarry legally in Rhode Island when you are still married in another country simply by representing that you have an official foreign divorce decree issued by another country, then I believe the answer is “No.”
If you are married to one person, you must first obtain a divorce before you can marry another person in Rhode Island. If there is any exception to this rule at all I most certainly would want someone to enlighten me as to how this is possible based on Rhode Island law.
Under Rhode Island law, as of the date of this response the act of bigamy which is getting married to another spouse when you are already married is a crime.
Note to the Writer of this Question: For purposes of accuracy you may need to revise your question to make sure you phrased it correctly or you may wish to give a hypothetical example for purposes of clarity.