Re: Possibly marriage for other reasons...?
This is interesting. Can you expand on why you don't think the fraud issue wouldn't be a problem Joe?
It appears that the sole reason here for getting married is to obtain an advantage over others for purposes of getting Federal Student Aid grants. Why would the government look on that any differently than they would for somone attempting to enter the country of collect SS benefits based on a sham marriage?
I may be going out on a limb here (matrimonial law is definitely not my area of expertise), but courts rarely look for the reasons that people get married in order to determine if they are doing so for some kind of economic benefit -- perhaps because married couples expect
some kind of economic benefit to result from their marriage. To give one anecdotal example: a very good friend of mine lived with her boyfriend for some years. Although neither put too much weight on the institution of marriage (they were members of the "it's just a piece of paper" crowd), they eventually decided to get married because of the tax benefits and for purposes of insurance coverage. Now, was theirs a "sham marriage?" Were they attempting to defraud the IRS and their insurers? That would be hard to say, since they also happened to love each other and were already in a committed relationship before they got married. But it's also quite true that they would not have married had it not been for the financial benefits.
The only instance that I know of where the government is actively interested in the motives behind a marriage is in the area of immigration. In any other respect, marriage is presumed to be for love, not money -- even though money often plays a prominent role in the decision.