Woman to marry dead fiancé after Hollande gives say-so

President Hollande has allowed a French woman to marry her dead fiancé, under a little-known law dating back 55 years.

Pascale Liéard, 48, was given permission for a posthumous marriage to groom Michael who died two years ago from a heart attack.

Liéard wrote to the President four times before he granted her wedding request- she plans to wear a white top and a black skirt for the occasion.


She said: “There are tears in normal weddings, so I can’t imagine what will happen at ours.”

She added: “It will be like any other wedding ceremony except that there will be a photograph in the place of Michael. Even though he is not here anymore, he is still my man.”

Liéard met Michael seven years ago, before he was imprisoned near their home town of Saint-Omer, north-west France.

Heart attack

They had planned to marry in jail, but Michael died suddenly of a heart attack a month before the planned wedding.

The law which allows posthumous marriages was introduced in 1959 after a dam burst in southern France, killing 420 people.

A pregnant woman was so upset at losing her fiancé in the accident, that President Charles de Gaulle allowed them to marry.


Liéard waited 20 months before her request to marry her dead fiancé was accepted, and the police led an inquiry to verify her story.

The law requires proof that the couple had planned to marry before death occurred.

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