Can you get married in the US if you are still married in a foreign country? 8 Answers as of November 06, 2012

After 8 years of marriage, I found out that my Ecuadorian wife is still married to a man in Ecuador. They came to this country and got married then divorced. But they are still married in Ecuador. Is my marriage to her legal?

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Havens & Lichtenberg PLLC
Havens & Lichtenberg PLLC | Michael Lichtenberg
You said your wife and her previous husband "came to the U.S. and got married then divorced". If a U.S. court granted a judgment of divorce dissolving the marriage between you wife and her prior husband, it does not matter if the divorce is not registered in Ecuador. If, however, her previous marriage were not legally terminated before she married you, then your marriage to her is void (and, if she received her green card through the marriage to you, it is also void and will be revoked by USCIS; if she has became a U.S. citizen, her citizenship will also be revoked).
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 11/6/2012
Universal Law Group, Inc. | Francis John Cowhig
If they divorced in the U.S. and have a final divorce decree in the U.S., then they are legally divorced.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/6/2012
Law Office of Rebecca White
Law Office of Rebecca White | Rebecca White
If she divorced her previous husband, she divorced him. She does not need to travel to Ecuador to also divorce there - she is now divorced. Just as you are married if you marry in the US, and then travel on vacation to Europe, you are still married during your vacation, even without registering to marry in each country you visit, if a marriage is valid in one country, it is a valid marriage when going to another country, and the same applies for divorce.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 11/6/2012
Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC
Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC | Pho Ethan Tran
If she was divorced in the US, then she is no longer legally married to her ex-husband.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 11/6/2012
Hilf & Hilf PLC
Hilf & Hilf PLC | Sufen Hilf
For US immigration authority, if she obtained a divorce decree here in the US, then she is divorced. You can definitely marry her, having a legal marriage. However, whether the government of Ecuador recognized the US divorcee decree, I am not sure. I guess it does not matter if there are immigration benefits to be sought, as long as she is divorced here.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/6/2012
    Law Office of Bijal Jani | Bijal Jani
    According to the laws of the USA, since your wife divorced her prior husband in the USA, she had the legal capability to remarry in the USA. Hence, your marriage to her is completely legal.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 11/5/2012
    Law Offices of Grinberg and Segal
    Law Offices of Grinberg and Segal | Alexander Segal
    I would need more information regarding why the divorce is not valid in Ecuador. In the U.S., a properly entered divorce is typically valid.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 11/5/2012
    Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny
    Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny | Svetlana Boukhny
    If they were divorced in the US, then they are divorced. You only need to get divorced once and in one place (country) as long as it is legal termination of marriage. As long as that was done prior to you getting married to her, then you are ok.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/5/2012
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