If you live for someone for many years as a couple, it is pretty much like you are married. After all, marriage is just a piece of paper, right? That is not entirely true, especially in Louisiana. According to KPLC, common law marriage, which is recognized in many states, is not legally recognized in this state. Common law marriage in states where it is recognized usually requires meeting stipulations, such as presenting yourselves as a married couple in public.
However, in Louisiana, the only type of marriage recognized is one that has been entered into via a civil contract. This basically means that you have a marriage license and have vowed to be each other's spouses in front of witnesses. The only time a common law marriage may be recognized in this state is if you have moved here from a state where your common law marriage was recognized. The court may rule that your marriage is legally valid. This usually involves going to court and producing witnesses on your behalf who can say your relationship is valid.
Getting legally married has its benefits. A marriage recognized by the state gives you specific rights, such as the ability to inherit property. You also get other rights that would allow you to help make decisions for your significant other in medical emergencies. If your relationship were to end, you also have legal protection. You could get alimony or ensure your rights to property are honored. This information is for education and is not legal advice.