In a landmark decision, an en banc panel of the Commonwealth Court has decided to abolish common-law marriage in Pennsylvania. The case stems from the death of an employee traveling on business when her flight crashed. The woman's common-law husband later filed for surviving spouse's benefits. Judge Bonnie Brigance Leadbetter cited opinions from courts around the country that argued that common-law marriage had lost its modern relevance and become a source of fraudulent claims.
Pa. Court Abolishes Common-Law Marriage
The Legal Intelligencer
September 19, 2003