Rep. Duchow: Fights for divorced persons rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                      		August 29, 2019
 Contact: Rep. Cindi Duchow 							                      (608) 266-3007  Rep. Duchow Fights for Divorced Persons Rights
Madison, WI – Representative Cindi Duchow (R-Delafield) has authored legislation with Senator Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) that would eliminate the six month waiting period after a finalized divorce. Wisconsin is just one of only six states that mandates a waiting period after a finalized divorce before an individual is allowed to re-marry. Of those states, Wisconsin is one of three states with the longest waiting period. This antiquated law has directly impacted the lives of people across the state.
“A number of people have contacted me with their personal story about how this law has negatively impacted them,” Rep. Duchow said. “Many of these individuals have already been waiting for a long period of time while they navigate what can be a lengthy divorce process. They should not have to wait even longer to start a family or a new union if they believe it is the right decision for them.”
Multiple people have contacted Rep. Duchow, all with a different circumstance. One individual was a 70 year old woman who wants to re-marry a man who has been separated from his wife for 18 years. Another was a woman who has already joined her family with a new partner and they are living together happily. All of these individuals simply just want to legalize their marriage through the state, even though they consider themselves together already.
“The reality is that every person going through a divorce has a different story, a different circumstance. If a legally single person wants to re-marry after a divorce is finalized, the government should not play a role in that decision,” Rep. Duchow said. “We should be supporting individuals and families in these circumstances, not prohibiting them from marriage.”
Wisconsin law mandates a minimum of four months before a divorce is finalized. Many divorces take much longer. The additional six month waiting period is predicated on the need for divorced persons to have a ‘cooling off period’ before they can re-marry.
“Government is standing in the way of a divorced persons rights and the freedom to live happily in a joined union. This antiquated law isn’t preventing people from having children with someone else for six months or living together before their so called ‘cooling off period’. By not eliminating the waiting period it actually discourages family units and marriage. We should be encouraging them and government needs to get out of the way of an individual’s personal decision to re-marry,” Rep. Duchow said.
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Representative Duchow represents the 99th Assembly District which includes the communities of Chenequa, Delafield, Dousman, Hartland, Merton, Nashotah, Oconomowoc Lake, Ottawa, and Wales; and portions of Genesee, North Prairie, Oconomowoc, and Summit.

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