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In re Estate of Yudkin.

2021 CO 2. No. 19SC234. Common Law—Divorce—Marriage and Cohabitation.

January 11, 2021

In this case, the Supreme Court applied the updated common law marriage test announced today in In re Marriage of Hogsett and Neale, 2021 CO 1, __ P.3d __, emphasizing that a common law marriage finding depends on the totality of the circumstances, and no single factor is dispositive. The Court determined that it is unclear from the record whether the parties mutually agreed to enter into a marital relationship. Moreover, the Court noted that while the magistrate’s treatment of certain evidence may have been appropriate under People v. Lucero, 747 P.2d 660 (Colo. 1987), it does not account for the legal and social changes to marriage acknowledged in Hogsett. The Court therefore vacated the Court of Appeals’ judgment and remanded with instructions to return the case to the probate court to reconsider whether the parties entered into a common law marriage under the refined test announced in Hogsett.

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