Mudcat Café message #3408100 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #147102   Message #3408100
Posted By: JohnInKansas
21-Sep-12 - 03:30 AM
Thread Name: BS: 'Gay marriage' question
Subject: RE: BS: 'Gay marriage' question
In the half dozen states where I've spent sufficient time to be curious about the marriage statutes, the civil marriage - the thing for which you get a license - does not mention any requirement that the couple have sex, or place any limitation on what kind(s) of sex they may have.

I haven't done any particularly detailed search/study, but it appears that "annulments" are seldom granted in civil courts, and only if it is found that there was legal impediment to the marriage, which rendered it null and void from the outset.

While an inability to perform expected acts, sexual or otherwise, that one party concealed or lied about prior to the marriage might be cited as an evidence to be considered by the court/judge any decision that simple "inability or failure to f*ck" was a sufficient cause to declare the marriage void would have to be based on the judge's belief that it was "an egregious violation of common (common law?) expectations" extensive enough to violate the agreement. In most cases I would expect that a decision would rely more on the presumption that the ability or proclivity was concealed from the other party before the marriage, and "he/she knew I wouldn't" would probably be an adequate defense.

The most common reason for a civil annulment probably is one of the parties being under the legal age to marry (and lacking parental consent) at the time of the marriage. A second reason that appears fairly often would be evidence that one of the parties was coerced or not mentally competent at the time of the marriage (but if one of you goes berserk later - even on the honeymoon - a divorce would likely be required).

I have known at least a half dozen heterosexually married couples who have said their marriage was based on agreement before the ceremony that there would be no sex of any kind between them during the marriage. Their reasons were apparently rather varied - and not my concern. Those marriages were perfectly valid, under the laws of all states for which I have any specific knowledge. At least one of these couples did divorce (not annul) the marriage while I knew them.

I have known at least an equal number who obtained a civil divorce that their religion did not recognize. All parties to those marriages, except one, did not remarry so far as I knew, citing the strictures of their religion; but a primary reason for the civil divorce in all cases was that the civil court can order and enforce support for the dependant party while the churches have no legal standing to do so.