Wisconsin Marriage Laws

765.24 - Removal of impediments to subsequent marriage

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Wisconsin Statutes ? The Family ? Chapter 765: Marriage

Removal of impediments to subsequent marriage

If a person during the lifetime of a husband or wife with whom the marriage is in force, enters into a subsequent marriage contract in accordance with s. 765.16, and the parties thereto live together thereafter as husband and wife, and such subsequent marriage contract was entered into by one of the parties in good faith, in the full belief that the former husband or wife was dead, or that the former marriage had been annulled, or dissolved by a divorce, or without knowledge of such former marriage, they shall, after the impediment to their marriage has been removed by the death or divorce of the other party to such former marriage, if they continue to live together as husband and wife in good faith on the part of one of them, be held to have been legally married from and after the removal of such impediment and the issue of such subsequent marriage shall be considered as the marital issue of both parents.

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History: 1979 c. 32 ss. 48, 92 (2); Stats. 1979 s. 765.24; 1983 a. 447. A 2nd marriage entered into while the plaintiff was already married will not be annulled when the plaintiff did not live with the 2nd husband after the first husband died. Smith v. Smith, 52 Wis. 2d 262, 190 N.W.2d 174 (1971). Public policy favors upholding a marriage attacked as void by a 3rd party as well as by a party to a marriage. Corning v. Carriers Insurance Co. 88 Wis. 2d 17, 276 N.W.2d 310 (Ct. App. 1979). The equitable doctrine of "clean hands" precluded the defendant from obtaining an annulment of a marriage to the plaintiff. A voidable marriage became valid upon the removal of the impediment to the marriage. Halker v. Halker, 92 Wis. 2d 645, 285 N.W.2d 745 (1979). A husband was estopped from challenging the validity of his wife's divorce from her first husband. Schlinder v. Schlinder, 107 Wis. 2d 695, 321 N.W.2d 343 (Ct. App. 1982).

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