Pickard v. Pickard
Court of Appeals of North Carolina
625 S.E.2d 869 (2006)
Hawk Littlejohn, a Native American, performed the marriage of Carl Glenn Pickard (plaintiff) and Jane Edwards Pickard (defendant) in the tradition of Native Americans. Prior to doing so, Littlejohn obtained a certificate ordaining himself as a minister in the Universal Life Church. Additionally, Carl and Jane applied for and received a North Carolina marriage license. For approximately 11 years, Carl and Jane lived and held themselves out as husband and wife. During that time, Carl initiated proceedings to adopt Jane’s adult biological daughter. Throughout the adoption process and subsequent legal proceedings, Carl listed himself as married to Jane. Afterward, the Pickards’ relationship deteriorated, and Carl and Jane separated. Carl filed a petition for an annulment. After a hearing, Jane moved for a directed verdict. The trial court denied Jane’s motion and held that the marriage ceremony had not been properly solemnized, because Littlejohn was not qualified to perform the ceremony. However, the court held that Carl was judicially estopped from claiming that his 11-year marriage was voidable under state annulment law, because Carl had previously affirmed, under oath, that he was lawfully married to Jane. Carl appealed. Jane cross-appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hudson, J.)
Dissent (Tyson, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 725,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 725,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 45,600 briefs, keyed to 983 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.