Louisiana Marriage Laws

§275 - Covenant marriage; applicability to already married couples

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Louisiana Revised Statutes - Title 9: Civil Code-Ancillaries - Code Title IV: Husband and Wife - Chapter 1: Marriage General Principles - Part VII: Covenant Marriage

Covenant marriage; applicability to already married couples

A. On or after August 15, 1997, married couples may execute a declaration of intent to designate their marriage as a covenant marriage to be governed by the laws relative thereto. B.(1) This declaration of intent in the form and containing the contents required by Subsection C of this Section must be presented to the officer who issued the couple's marriage license and with whom the couple's marriage certificate is filed. If the couple was married outside of this state, a copy of the foreign marriage certificate, which need not be certified, with the declaration of intent attached thereto, shall be filed with the officer who issues marriage licenses in the parish in which the couple is domiciled. The officer shall make a notation on the marriage certificate of the declaration of intent of a covenant marriage and attach a copy of the declaration to the certificate. (2) On or before the fifteenth day of each calendar month, the officer shall forward to the state registrar of vital records each declaration of intent of a covenant marriage filed with him during the preceding calendar month pursuant to this Section. C.(1) A declaration of intent to designate a marriage as a covenant marriage shall contain all of the following: (a) A recitation signed by both parties to the following effect: "A COVENANT MARRIAGE We do solemnly declare that marriage is a covenant between a man and a woman who agree to live together as husband and wife for so long as they both may live. We understand the nature, purpose, and responsibilities of marriage. We have read the Covenant Marriage Act, and we understand that a Covenant Marriage is for life. If we experience marital difficulties, we commit ourselves to take all reasonable efforts to preserve our marriage, including marital counseling. With full knowledge of what this commitment means, we do hereby declare that our marriage will be bound by Louisiana law on Covenant Marriage, and we renew our promise to love, honor, and care for one another as husband and wife for the rest of our lives." (b)(i) An affidavit by the parties that they have discussed their intent to designate their marriage as a covenant marriage with a priest, minister, rabbi, clerk of the Religious Society of Friends, any clergyman of any religious sect, or a professional marriage counselor, which included a discussion of the obligation to seek marital counseling in times of marital difficulties and that they have received and read the informational pamphlet developed and promulgated by the office of the attorney general entitled "Covenant Marriage Act" which provides a full explanation of the terms and conditions of a Covenant Marriage. (ii) An attestation signed by the counselor confirming that the parties were counseled as to the nature and purpose of the marriage. (iii) The signature of both parties witnessed by a notary. (2) The declaration shall contain two separate documents, the recitation and the affidavit, the latter of which shall include the attestation either included therein or attached thereto. The recitation shall be prepared in duplicate originals, one of which shall be retained by the parties and the other, together with the affidavit and attestation, shall be filed as provided in Subsection B of this Section.

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Acts 1997, No. 1380, §3; Acts 1999, No. 1298, §1.

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