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JD 1992
JD 1992, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33405
Experience:  Began practicing Family Law in 1992
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We were married in NYC in June 1995. Later that same day, he

Customer Question

We were married in NYC in June 1995. Later that same day, he informed me that he was married to a woman in his country, India. He lied to the marriage license official when asked if he was ever married. With that information, as well as some other issues, we parted ways and have not seen each other since. Also, the marriage was never consummated. Are we legally married? Do I need to get a divorce or annulment? Also, I have searched (Postal, DMV, Bd of Elections, etc.) for him with no trace found. Is he legally dead?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

In a case like this the best way to handle it is through an annulment, if the judge will grant one. That way there was no community property or debt ever acquired. If you get a lawyer they can handle getting him served by "substituted service".

If he was married at the time then no, you weren't married since you can't be married to two people at the same time. The issue of consummation isn't an issue any more.

You can find a lawyer to assist you by going to and in the section for Area of Practice enter Civil Litigation or Consumer Law. Either of those will have the skill set you need.

If your question has been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work.

Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread. I want to be sure that all of your questions are answered. In addition, once you issue your Positive Rating the question will lock open and no longer time out so you can come back to it anytime in the future if you think of any follow ups.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
what about the 5-7 year rule of presumed to be dead? As stated, I have searched for him and found no trace.
Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 year ago.

That really doesn't apply in this case and doesn't apply in many cases any more. However, not being able to find him is pretty easy to handle. The lawyer will get an authorization for substituted service which can be by publishing in a newspaper, posting at the courthouse, etc.