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Marriage over the Internet?

Recently we had a post on our estate planning blog about electronic wills, now only recognized by the state of Utah. What about electronic marriage?

Two law professors at Michigan State University are advocating e-marriage. Their suggestion arose out of a situation where a Marine Sgt. met a Japanese woman in Japan. She became pregnant and he was sent to Iraq. The two wanted to find a way to get married so they had a proxy marriage (recognized in some states where the couple are not in the same location). Then unfortunately, the Marine was killed in Iraq, causing estate planning issues and immigration problems for his widow and son.

The two law professors propose e-marriage as a convenient and flexible way for couples to marry that are separated by distance. With the help of the Internet couples could get married without being physically present together. There would have to be safeguards against identity fraud and the law professors acknowledge that an e-marriage, depending on state law, may not carry with it the same legal rights as the usual marriage. Obviously many groups see this as an erosion of traditional marriage and would oppose such a plan.

At Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, we handle both estate planning issues and family law. See our family law website for articles about divorce, child support, custody, paternity, pre-nuptial agreements, and other family law issues. Your initial consultation is free for both estate planning and family law.

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