Even though a couple lived together for a year and a half, participated in a faux wedding ceremony and a common pleas court found the couple to be a common law husband and wife, the Commonwealth Court has ruled the man and woman were not married, and the “wife” could not be granted compensation for a fatal claim petition.

“A party claiming common-law marriage to another must offer proof of an actual intention of the parties to form a marriage contract,” Judge Bernard L. McGinley wrote for a three-judge panel of the Commonwealth Court.