Everything You Need to Know About the Annulment Process

Annul My Marriage Everything You Need to Know About the Annulment Process

The Basics of The Annulment Process

It does not happen often; however, there are citations when a marriage may have been void from the beginning. Rather than going through an expensive divorce, you could let the annulment process take over. Of course, as is the case with any legal procedure, there are some rules and steps in place. DoNotPay can walk you through the annulment procedure and help you determine how to proceed.

Who Benefits From the Marriage Annulment Procedure?

When you ask for an annulment, you ask the legal system to cancel the marriage. If the courts agree, they undo the paperwork, and you live as if you had never been married. You and the other party have no responsibilities and duties towards one another.

This works because the annulment process results in the understanding that the marriage was invalid. Men and women can benefit from this legal finding. Moreover, the annulment applies to same-sex marriages as well as to mixed-sex unions.

Why Would a Court Annul a Marriage?

At this time, there are several reasons why a court might grant a marriage annulment.

  1. Bigamy. If you marry someone who is already – or still – legally married to someone else, your marriage is not valid. Of course, it also works the other way around. If you are currently legally married and marry another person, the second union is legally invalid.
  2. Incest. The law prevents closely related individuals from marrying one another. Examples include brothers and sisters, aunts and nephews, and so forth. While the registrar will not check your family tree, you are required to declare that you and your would-be spouse are not closely related. Even though you may lie, the resulting marriage is invalid.
  3. Inability to consent. Another one of the annulment requirements is a person's inability to freely agree to be a part of the marriage. One example is forced consent, where one party to the union is forced into it. You could also consider being underage as an inability to consent.

How Do You Request for a Marriage to Get Annulled?

Annulment is a state-right issue. Therefore, each state has its own set of rules on how to go about the procedure. For example, some states allow you to file for an annulment at any time. Others limit you to a six-month time window after entering into the marriage.

There are additional technicalities to consider.

Joint petition
Filing fee
  •  How much does an annulment cost?
  • There is a filing fee for the court papers that will annul your union. If secondary issues such as property questions crop up, the costs may increase.
Religious annulment
  • Aside from the legal annulment, there are also religious annulments. These are typically separate from the legal proceedings. For example, in the Catholic Church, you may ask to have a marriage annulled that ended in divorce. Other faith communities also have their unique rules.

What Is the Difference Between an Annulment and a Divorce?

In an annulment vs. divorce consideration, remember that the marriage annulment procedure says the union never legally happened. In contrast, divorce acknowledges that a legal marriage took place, but it stipulates ways to dissolve the union. Typically, divorce is more expensive than any new annulment process. That said, it brings closure to some legal issues.

  • Separation of assets.
  • Settlement of marital debts.
  • Alimony and (or) child support.

Can You File the Paper for the Annulment Process Yourself?

As long as you follow the marriage annulment procedure your state has set up, you can file the papers yourself.

  • Find out the address of your county's family court.
  • Download or buy the forms the court asks you to fill out for an annulment.
  • File the paperwork, pay the filing fee, and serve the other party with their copy of the papers.
  • Check-in with the clerk if you have been given a hearing date, or if the annulment proceeds without one.
  • Find out whether the court will accept your paperwork for an annulment or ask you to file for divorce instead.
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West VirginiaDelaware

Choose the Easy Annulment Marriage Procedure With DoNotPay

DoNotPay takes the guesswork out of the procedure. In only three steps, the website can guide you through the annulment process in your jurisdiction. There is no need to file all the paperwork only to learn later on that your state does not consider your marriage void.

  1. Search for Annulment on the DoNotPay website. 
  2. Kick off the process to see if your marriage is eligible for an annulment. 
  3. Answer some specific questions about your marriage and see if your state law allows for an annulment. 

You now have a good understanding of the options open to you. Use them to your advantage and do not pay extra for a divorce.

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