Law Office of Kimberly N. Shanklin, PLLC.
Serving Denton County Since 2002
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Bigamy

Bigamy

Chapter 25 of the Texas Penal Code places restrictions and guidelines on offenses dealing with the family.

“Bigamy”, as per § 25.01 of the Texas Penal Code, occurs when an individual:

  • Is legally married and he either: purports to marry or does marry a person other than his spouse in this state, or any other state or foreign country, under circumstances that would, but for the actor's prior marriage, constitute a marriage lives with a person other than his spouse in this state under the appearance of being married; or

  • he knows that a married person other than his spouse is married and he purports to marry or does marry that person in this state, or any other state or foreign country, under circumstances that would, but for the person's prior marriage, constitute a marriage or lives with that person in this state under the appearance of being married.

"Under the appearance of being married" means holding out that the parties are married with cohabitation and an intent to be married by either party.

An offense under this section is a felony of the third degree, except that if at the time of the commission of the offense, the person whom the actor marries or purports to marry or with whom the actor lives under the appearance of being married is:

  • 17 years of age, the offense is a felony of the second degree; or

  • 16 years of age or younger, the offense is a felony of the first degree.

Severity of Crime

Third Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 10 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

Second Degree FelonY

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 20 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

First Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for life, or

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 99 years or less than five years with the exception of aggravated sexual assault, which adds a 25-year minimum punishment if the victim is younger than 6, or younger than 14 and the offense contained threats of serious bodily injury or death, or use of a deadly weapon

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000