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McPeek v. McCardle

888 N.E.2d 171 (2008)

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McPeek v. McCardle

Indiana Supreme Court

888 N.E.2d 171 (2008)

Facts

Edwina and Charles McCardle (defendant), residents of Indiana, obtained a marriage license from an Indiana state court clerk but traveled to and married in Ohio. The couple did not obtain an Ohio marriage license. The marriage ceremony was performed by a reverend who was authorized by his church to solemnize marriages. The reverend filled out the marriage certificate, and the day after the marriage, an Indiana court clerk filed and recorded the marriage license. Thereafter, Edwina transferred ownership of her Indiana farm to Charles and her together as husband and wife. Ten years later, Edwina died intestate. Edwina’s children from her first marriage (plaintiffs) filed an action for declaratory judgment in Indiana state court, arguing that the marriage between Edwina and Charles was void and that Charles was not the rightful owner of the farm. The trial court granted Charles’s motion to dismiss the complaint, finding that the marriage was voidable, not void, under Indiana law, and that neither party to the marriage had sought to void the marriage. The court of appeals affirmed. Edwina’s children appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Rucker, J.)

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