TN 29 (05-01)

GN 00305.045 Validity of Last Marriage Where Prior Marriage Subsequently Terminated by Divorce

A. Policy — validity of last marriage where prior marriage subsequently terminated by divorce

The fact that the prior marriage was not terminated until after the date of the current marriage does not necessarily make the current marriage invalid. In some States upon removal of the impediment, the current marriage:

  • will become a valid common-law marriage (GN 00305.070); or

  • may still be valid based upon the presumption of validity of the last marriage (GN 00305.035).

B. Procedure — validity of last marriage where prior marriage subsequently terminated by divorce

Follow the steps below to determine the necessary action.

If . . .

Then . . .

the worker or the claimant was the defendant in the divorce action

Assume the other party did not secure a divorce or annulment previously.

the claimant or the living worker was a party to the prior marriage

Get a statement that he/she did not secure a divorce or annulment previously; this is sufficient to rebut the presumption that the later marriage is valid.

the worker is deceased

Follow the development in GN 00305.040 to determine whether the presumption may be applied.

the worker or the claimant was the plaintiff in a divorce action to terminate the prior marriage

Locate the other party to the prior marriage

the other party can be located

Get a statement that he/she did not secure a divorce or annulment; this is sufficient to rebut the presumption.

the other party cannot be located

Examine the divorce or annulment records.

an answer was made to the Bill of Complaint without indicating that the prior marriage had been previously terminated

That is sufficient to determine that the other party did not previously have the marriage terminated; do not apply the presumption.

no answer was filed to the Bill of Complaint and the party to the prior marriage cannot be located

Develop per GN 00305.040.


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0200305045
GN 00305.045 - Validity of Last Marriage Where Prior Marriage Subsequently Terminated by Divorce - 03/24/2014
Batch run: 03/24/2014
Rev:03/24/2014