Getting married is a very important step in many people’s lives.. You have to prepare everything, but generally you do it with illusion because what you want is to share the rest of your life with that special person. However, sometimes not everything is what it seems.
It is hoped that this union will be the result of love and mutual commitment, but there are those who opt for marriage for convenience. In this article we address this issue to understand what is behind an arranged marriage.
The inconveniences of marriage of convenience
A marriage of convenience is performed to obtain some kind of legal benefit.. Couples come before the law to formalize their union, but actually do it to get some kind of benefit. In reality, there is not always an emotional bond.
This type of marriage is illegal and is considered a fraud in most parts of the world, and there are even penalties for the parties involved. Here’s everything there is to know about marriage for convenience.
1. Is performed to obtain legal benefits
Marriage for convenience is so called because it seeks to achieve advantages. It is contemplated to enjoy some type of benefit, and among the most common motives are those related to migratory matters.
The fact is that one way to obtain permanent residence in another country is through marriage. However, if it is not carried out for love it is not considered valid. The law expects this union to be given out of love affairs and not merely as a means of obtaining regulated documents to reside in the country.
2. It’s illegal
Convenience marriage is illegal in most countries of the world. It is classified as a crime in most legislations and there are various sanctions, so it is a thorny issue for anyone who may raise it.
Marriage must take place between two people with the mutual desire to form a family. Anything outside this framework is simply illegal, because it would mean that it is done for some sort of profit.
3. There is no sentimental bond between spouses.
In marriages of convenience there is no sentimental relationship between the parties.and the authorities have ways and means to prove it. Even after a legal marriage has taken place, the veracity of a legal union can be inspected.
When the objective is to obtain some legal benefit, those involved do not really have a couple relationship. In many cases there is not even an affective bond, which makes marriage something that transgresses its essence.
4. There are mafias
This type of fraud has reached massive levels. Migration phenomena around the world have been increasing in recent years, and this type of alternative has also been increasing.
The truth is that multiple organizations or mafias dedicated to marriages for convenience have been detected. They act discreetly by linking people who seek residency or other benefits through marriage.
Sanctions relating to a marriage of convenience may be economic or even imprisonment. This depends on the legislation of each country, the sanctions being very harsh in some cases.
For example, in Spain the fine ranges from 500 to 1000 euros. However, if it is proven that there was also a payment to facilitate illegal immigration, the crime is greater. In these cases people can go to jail.
6. Social repercussions
High rates of marriages for convenience affect society as a whole. The civil registry has had to tighten up its requirements and procedures in order to be able to verify that these are legitimate marriages, making the bureaucratic process more tedious.
Any kind of union, including homosexual marriages, can be called into question. There are many reported cases in which heterosexual people try to pretend that they are homosexual only to enter a country.
7. There’s a follow-up on suspicion
Sometimes there are cases that are studied once the wedding has taken place.. Suspicions or indications may arise that something is not within expectations in a legal marriage, so the law may initiate an investigation.
It is usually done by surprise, so it is easy to detect if two people do not live together as expected. It would be normal for them to carry out family and social activities together, and if this is not done there may be an investigation.
8. Annulment of marriage
If it is proven that the marriage was for convenience, it is annulled.. Anyway, this is the least of the problems. In addition to punishing the parties, the legal situation of the foreigner becomes irregular again and he or she may even go to prison.
In addition, in some countries the repatriation process is carried out immediately, and all of this generates a criminal record for those involved. There are people who perform this type of marriage to help someone they know, but the consequences must be considered.
9. Unexpected benefits
There are a few other reasons to perform a marriage of convenience. In some countries the marriage bond provides certain legal, labor and financial advantages to the bride and groom.
Certain types of credit, health services or employment benefits are available if the person is married. For this reason there are people who arrange marriages for convenience in order to enjoy some of these benefits.
10. Internet and social networks
The phenomenon of marriage for convenience has grown with the advent of the Internet.. Although it has existed for many years, social networks and different websites have allowed the topic to grow.
Making first contact today is easier than it was a few years ago. A web search allows many people to contact others. Sometimes this is recorded and used as hard evidence to confirm that a marriage of convenience took place.
- Szuchman, P. (2011). The Marriage Business. Barcelona: Editorial Urano.