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Odd Texas case spotlights bigamy: Woman may have had 4 husbands

In an unusual case out of Gregg County, authorities recently arrested a Texas woman for being married to multiple men at the same time. Charges of bigamy were brought on November 15, although officials released the woman the same day.

While the 32-year-old admits she knew she was committing the uncommon crime, she also claims to have a medical condition that leads to an impaired memory. Given the odd nature of her various marriages, it remains to be seen if any prenuptial agreements with any of the men she married will surface.

While bigamy pales in comparison to child abuse or assault, it is far from a victimless crime. In many instances deception forms the foundation for bigamy, as it appeared to in the Gregg County case. In that set of marriages, the four husbands found out about each other after they were married. The men allege that the woman they married severely disrupted their lives. The woman, however, claims she did file divorce papers to end all of her unions.

In Texas, there are many legal avenues for ensuring clarity at the start of a marriage, rather than waiting until the end of a partnership to discover certain truths. One tried-and-true method is a prenuptial agreement, which can be of use even when neither party owns significant assets.

While prenuptial agreements don't necessarily need to examine every tiny detail of a couple's relationship, they do get the ball rolling when it comes to honesty and upfront admissions. A little legwork in advance might have saved these men from heartache and embarrassment later on.

Source: KSLA-TV, "East Texas woman arrested for bigamy," Dec. 6, 2012

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Attorney Christine K. Lincoln

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