Entry of a divorce decree, and an order of annulment both end a “marriage”. The difference is that a divorce decree ends a legally recognized marriage while an annulment declares that the marriage was never valid or legal. The choice to request an annulment rather than file for divorce is different for everyone. For some, the reasons are based on religious beliefs, and for others an annulment is more desirable for financial reasons. Regardless of the reason for choosing an annulment versus filing for divorce does not mean you qualify for an annulment.
Florida law on annulments is sparse. However, there are common grounds for seeking an annulment, which include:
● Marriages entered into as a result of coercion or duress are not considered valid marriages and qualify for the annulment process.
● A marriage to a person suffering from a mental instability qualifies the marriage for the annulment process. Think of Britney Spears and Dennis Rodman in this regard.
● When one party materially misrepresents one of the essentials of marriage, such as the ability to have children, an annulment can be requested.
● Marriages by underage persons or between family members (such as cousins) are not valid marriages and can be annulled.
No one gets married with the thought that it will end in divorce or annulment. If you believe your marriage isn’t valid, whether for religious or other reasons, seek the advice of a competent family law attorney for help determining if you are eligible for an annulment.
If you are considering separating, call our office for more information. We will review the facts of your case and advise you if an annulment is an option. We offer an initial visit for a onetime fee. Contact a qualified family law attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast today