Vir et uxor consentur in lege una persona

Vir et uxor consentur in lege una persona

Literal Meaning

A husband and wife are regarded in law as one person.

Explanation & Origin

Husband and wife are considered as same.

This particular maxim of marriage stems from strong scriptural bias and explains why husband and wife cannot be witnessed for , or against , each other because of the union of person that exists.

This applies only to marriage contracted under the Matrimonial Causes Act and not to marriages contracted under the customary law of Nigeria.


If A has committed a theft and B his wife witnessed the case for his husband. Under this maxim , as husband and wife are considered as same the witness cannot be taken by the Court of law.

Case Reference

Op.411/1998 Of Family Court vs By Sri.John Mathew

In this case a family set up, when the emotion of ‘ours’ gives way to the feeling of ‘meum and tuum’, it will shatter the meaning and spirit of the salutary maxim ‘Vir et uxor, consentur in lege una persona‘ meaning husband and wife considered one person in law. Further matrimonial strife and consequential degeneration in their relation may ultimately lead to parting of ways. However, in most of the cases, the partners may be reluctant for a pari passu partition of the properties jointly acquired. Such invidious acts may also lead to list of different dimensions and may also lead to a list laid as a parthian shot. In such eventualities, the kindred on both sides may stand behind their concerned kin. The script of the case on hand is also of no difference.

Edited by Vigneshwar Ramasubramania

Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje

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