We all know that marriages just don’t work out sometimes. But sometimes it’s obvious to observers or to one or both parties to a marriage that the marriage should not have taken place at all. When ending a marriage, you have some options: divorce, legal separation, and annulment. However, annulment may be the choice most shrouded in mystery. How many people have you known who actually annulled a marriage? It’s best to understand the process before answering the question, “Should I request an annulment?”
What Is Annulment?
When the legality of a marriage is at question, one party may ask a court for an annulment. If the court grants the annulment, then it’s as if the marriage never existed.
Always talk to an attorney for seeking an annulment. If you have children or own property, you may need to address legal obligations and assert legal rights.
Am I Eligible to Request an Annulment?
You must have a legal reason for having a marriage annulled. Can you answer “yes” to any of the following questions:
- Did you marry a close relative or someone who is already married? Then your marriage was never valid. Talk to an attorney about severing any ties between you and the other party to your marriage.
- Were you or your spouse under age 18? Young people can be impulsive. Under California law, you can annul a marriage when one or both parties are underage.
- Were you and your spouse of sound mind when you married? Both parties must understand the consequences of a wedding ceremony. A party of unsound mind lacks the ability – or the capacity – to be married. A court may grant an annulment in these situations.
- Did your current spouse lie to get you to marry? An unscrupulous person may lie about important issues in the lead up to the ceremony. The innocent spouse can request an annulment when fraud is present.
- Was the marriage voluntary on your part? It’s possible to be forced into a marriage against your will. If this is the case, you may be able to request that the marriage be annulled.
- Is your partner unable to consummate the marriage? No matter the reason, a court may consider this grounds for an annulment.
If you have found yourself in one of the situations mentioned above, then having your marriage annulled may be an option.
Should You Request an Annulment?
It depends completely on your situation and your goals.The attorneys at the Law Offices of Judy L. Burger are experienced at all phases of divorce, legal separation, and annulment. Call us at 415-293-8314 to schedule a private appointment or visit our website. We maintain offices in San Francisco, Beverly Hills, Marin County, Santa Barbara, Ventura/Oxnard, San Jose, Gold River (Sacramento), and surrounding communities.