Articles Tagged with polygamy

Board Certified Family Law Specialist Matt Arnold answers the question: “What does uncontested divorce mean?”

The family from television’s “Sister Wives” is back in the news after a federal appeals court restored Utah’s state ban on polygamy this month. In 2013, a federal district court had struck down main parts of that state law against bigamy, or holding more than one marriage license at once. The 2013 ruling found that the state law violated the polygamists’ right to religious freedom and privacy.

Board Certified Family Law Specialist Matt Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Does adultery affect my divorce case?”


Stars of the TLC reality show “Sister Wives” can return to their home state of Utah and live together without the fear of prosecution by the State for polygamy. Stars Kody Brown, Meri Brown, Janelle Brown, Christine Brown and Robyn Sullivan left their home while the suit was pending after “repeated” violations of their constitutional rights and “years of criminal investigation and public accusations,” according to their attorney.

polygamy symbol Charlotte Family Law Attorney North Carolina Divorce LawyerThe Browns sued Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert, Attorney General Mark Shurtleff and Utah County Attorney Jeffrey R. Buhman in 2011. In their complaint, the Browns acknowledged that only Kody and Meri Brown were legally married, and that the family did not hold multiple marriage licenses. Instead, “they call themselves a family in the eyes of their church.”

In their complaint, the Browns alleged that Utah’s criminal bigamy law criminalized “not just polygamous marriages but also an array of plural intimate relationships and associations of consenting adults.” They asked a federal district court to enjoin Utah’s enforcement of “laws banning and criminalizing polygamy.”

Utah statute Section 76-7-101 made a person “guilty of bigamy when, knowing he has a husband or wife or knowing the other person has a husband or wife,” marries “or cohabits with another person.”

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