Woman Marries Dead Man: Utah Woman Reportedly Allowed To Marry Boyfriend After He Died

As bizarre as it may sound, one woman has reportedly been granted the legal right to have a common-law union with a deceased man.

On Tuesday, Dec. 9, the Utah Supreme Court ruled that Janetta Gardiner could be married posthumously to her boyfriend, Kenneth Vanderwerff, reports Fox-13 Now. The ruling is quite different considering the marriage took place after he died.

According to court documentation, Gardiner, 82, and Vanderwerff were involved romantic relationship that reportedly began back in 2007. The courtship lasted until his death at the age of 78 in 2010. Unfortunately, the two never got around to marrying the traditional way. After Kenneth passed away, Gardiner took the initiative to make things happen by requesting to be married to her late boyfriend in a “common law union.” The filing took place approximately one month after his death.

A judge granted her request and appointed her as executor of his estate since he reportedly had no immediate family. But of course, that ruling didn’t fare well with Vanderwerff’s distant cousins. Although the ruling reportedly stated that he had no immediate family, he did have cousins who came forward with an attempt to contest the ruling.

Here’s the detailed version of the Utah Supreme Court Ruling.

Utah Supreme Court ruling in Gardiner by Ben Winslow