Lack of Form or More?


Hi All. New here and extremely confused.

I am Catholic married to a Catholic in a civil union (we both lost our way). My husband is once divorced to a non-Catholic woman that was married previously to a man I think was a Catholic.

I wanted to have our marriage convalidated as our daughters have just enrolled in religious education. I thought it would be nice, since we had lost our way, to do things the right way and return to our faith community. I thought we would fall under the category of "lack of form."

Now, I think I am reading that we will have to get his ex-wife's marriage certificate and divorce papers for ligamen purposes? Is that correct? I have no idea if they were married in a church - I don't believe so - she is of the Jewish faith.

I am so upset now because he is never...NEVER...going to ask or get his ex-wife to produce documentation of her previous marriage for him.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

I am going to call the deacon tomorrow - just thought I would ask.


See your priest, but if he is Catholic than he had an obligation to be married in the Church or if married outside with dispensation. If that did not happen then that was a lack of form. If that did happen than in that case he will be required to go through a formal decree of nullity. I am putting this very simply and there are many other variables to be considered but you cannot be convalidated and are not considered married at this point unless that is granted. God bless you and best of luck.


Thank you so much for your reply, Joanofarc. We were going to start the defect of form process but I read that since my husband's ex-wife was married before she married him - this would cause us to file paperwork for her previous marriage as well. :confused:

I apologize if I am rambling - this whole thing is fairly stressful to me.

Again, I really appreciate your response and thank you for sharing with me.


Either way - the proper way to start the paperwork is by speaking to your parish priest and he will guide you in these matters. As far as the ex-wife's paperwork - which paperwork exactly are you referring to? She won't have a baptismal certificate as she is Jewish and everything else should be on the marriage and divorce certificates.


Speak to your Priest. He doesn't have to ask for paperwork from his ex-wife regarding her 1st marriage. I just went to courthouses to obtain certified copies of the marriage license and divorce decree. Both of which are a matter of public record. He was married in one state (45 mins away) and divorced in another (hour a half away). It was worth the drive. He never would have helped me anyway.


What you do should not ever effect how your children are treated with the Catholic church.


Thank you all so much for your input - I truly appreciate it. It makes me feel like I am not alone!!!! I put a call into our Deacon this morning, so I guess we will take it from there.

;) Thanks again for your support!


I'm praying for you. I hope my previous post helped you. If you need more info on how to find the documents from the prior marriage please feel free to send a private message to me.


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