Predatory Marriage involves vulnerable adults being led into a marriage which financially benefits their new spouse. Predatory Marriage UK aim to reform marriage laws and procedures to protect people with dementia.
Joan Blass was 91 with severe dementia and terminal cancer. After her death in March 2016, it was found that a much younger man, age 68, had secretly married her five months previously. She never knew that she was married. These events have had a devastating effect on Joan's family both emotionally and financially. They were shocked by how few checks there were to stop this marriage taking place. They believe that there needs to be better protection against such predatory marriage to prevent this happening to anyone else.
Predatory Marriage UK aim to:
- Change the law such that a marriage does not automatically revoke a Will
- Create an offence of Predatory Marriage, perhaps as a subset of Forced Marriage.
- Publish Notices/Banns on the Internet.
- Train Registrars to look for signs of insufficient mental capacity to marry.
- Add a robust set of questions for registrars to ask at marriage, with clear procedures for them to follow if correct answers are not given.
- Ensure Registrars will stop a marriage ceremony if there are any doubts.
- Add “The marriage was fraudulent” to the permitted reasons to annul a marriage after one party has died.
Find out more at the Predatory Marriage UK website.