Annulment is an often misunderstood legal concept. A civil annulment is wholly separate from a religious annulment. The church grants a religious annulment, and religious annulments have no bearing on civil legal status.
Civil annulments and divorces are similar in that there is a petition filed with the family court asking for a status determination to be made about a marriage. However, a divorce ends a marriage, and an annulment declares a marriage void as if it never legally existed.
An annulment dissolves a marriage that was not legally valid from the very beginning, returning a person’s marital status to single. That person goes on to live their life as if they were never legally married at all.
Annulments are rare in Arizona. Most couples file for divorce because they do not meet any of the grounds necessary for an annulment.
Grounds for an annulment include:
Annulment is not a means to a fast divorce. When there is a valid marriage, there cannot be an annulment. Instead, a couple must file for a divorce.
A marriage, no matter how short, does not qualify for annulment because of its length. A valid marriage is valid regardless of its length and requires a divorce to dissolve it. Only marriages without legal standing are voidable.
Annulments have serious effects on finances and child custody matters. Therefore, it is vital to speak with an experienced family law attorney before proceeding with any legal issues concerning an annulment.
If you are unsure whether your marriage qualifies for a civil annulment, call the experienced Chandler divorce attorneys at Wilson-Goodman, PLLC. Our skilled attorneys can evaluate your marriage circumstances and advise you if you meet one or more of the grounds for annulment in Arizona.
Discover the difference compassion and knowledge can make during your divorce or annulment by contacting Wilson-Goodman, PLLC, today. We want to help you through this difficult time and give you the practical advice and legal strategies needed to make you successful in the future.