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Lewis v. Anderson

173 S.W.3d 556 (2005)

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Lewis v. Anderson

Texas Court of Appeals

173 S.W.3d 556 (2005)

Facts

Harold Lewis (defendant) and Mindy Anderson (plaintiff) were married in 1974 and divorced in 1977. The parties then cohabitated from 1978 until 1998 and continued to celebrate their wedding anniversary. The parties maintained separate bank accounts. In 1979, the parties joined a church and presented themselves as married. On September 21, 1982, the parties filed a petition to adopt their first child, and both the adoption petition and the subsequent final adoption certificate identified Anderson and Lewis as married. In 1985, the parties adopted their second child, and that adoption decree also listed the parties as married. The parties were presented as a married couple to both children’s schools. In 1998, Anderson filed for divorce and Lewis denied the existence of the marriage, asserting he never agreed to be married again. The trial court found the parties had a common-law marriage as of September 21, 1982. Lewis appealed, arguing that the evidence was factually and legally insufficient to support the jury’s finding.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Moseley, J.)

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