common law marriages in virginia

Does Virginia have “Common Law” Marriages?

A common law marriage is essentially the decision that you and your partner are married, without actually legally being married. Common law marriages in Virginia are one of those rumors that people actually believe. Despite the fact that Virginia does not practice common law marriages, there are 10 states that do. Thus, Virginia will recognize common law marriages as valid if they occurred in the following states and the marriage must follow certain requirements for that state:

1. Alabama
2. Colorado
3. D.C.
4. Iowa
5. Kansas
6. Montana
7. Rhode Island
8. South Carolina
9. Texas
10. Utah

If you and your partner were married via common law in one of these states, and you decide to divorce, you will need a common law divorce. That’s right, just because you decided you were married in another state, and you reaped the benefits of common law marriage in Virginia, you must still dissolve the common law marriage in Virginia. Once you decide to dissolve the marriage, the Courts in Virginia will determine the rights of both parties.

If you have any questions about common law marriages in Virginia, feel free to give us a call at 757-656-1000 or email us at We will be happy to set an appointment to answer your questions!

For more information, check out all of our blog posts on the topic of Divorce.