The Section 57 Offences against the Person act 1861 defines bigamy as:
Whosoever, being married, shall marry any other person during the life of the former husband or wife, whether the second marriage shall have taken place in England or Ireland or elsewhere, shall be guilty of an offence, and being convicted shall be liable to imprisonment for any term not exceeding seven years. Sentencing: On Summary conviction (Magistrate`s Court) six months imprisonment, a fine not exceeding £5,000, or both.On Indictment (Crown Court): The maximum penalty is seven years imprisonment, a fine, or both.

Each allegation is on different facts in relation to this section, and for advice on bigamy and the law, contact Penman Sedgwick.

Click here for a case example

R.v. V – Luton Crown Court

The Defendant, a 23 year old married man in the Philippines, met and married a French National in this country, and on such basis made Application to remain in the United Kingdom.

The Charges Were:
1. At Barnet Registry Office, for the purpose of procuring a marriage, knowingly and wilfully made a false declaration, required under any Act of Parliament for the time being in force relating to marriage, contrary to section 3 (1) (A) of the Perjury Act 1911.
2. At Watford Registry Office during the life of the present wife ( In the Philippines ) went through a form of marriage with another, contrary to section 57 of The Offences Against The Person Act 1861..

Imprisonment for a period of 8 months, suspended for 18 months, and 120 hours community service

The Law:
Section 3(1)(A)Perjury Act 1861 – On indictment liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding seven years or to a fine or to both.Section 57 The Offences Against The Person Act 1861 – Imprisonment not exceeding seven years