Annulment vs. Divorce

The practice of annulment is very much like divorce in that it is a legal undertaking that dissolves a present marriage. At a divorce, the union is known to have been valid and have been afterwards terminated. Annulment, on the other hand, establishes the marriage was not legal in the first place and, consequently, erases the lawful existence of the union. That is an important distinction which could have consequences for future unions as well as the legal status of the parties with respect to one another.

Some are afraid that if they get an annulment, the ownership of their children will be considered questionable. In Florida, this isn’t the case, at least in voidable marriage; the law strictly says that voidable marriages can still be considered valid until they are annulled. So, an annulment in this instance doesn’t affect the children for any different reasons than divorce does.

However, children from a voided marriage aren’t considered legitimate in Florida law, because of the fact that a voided marriage is not valid from the beginning.

Regardless of if the marriage is considered voidable or void, the court makes a decision regarding child custody, visitation, and support, with your parenting plan.

Annulment laws in Florida lets the circuit court give support pendente lite, which is temporary alimony annulment. It also lets judges ask the spouse with more income to assist the poorer spouse for help with attorney fees.

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After an annulment is given, neither spouse can gain the property rights of a spouse. Also, neither can gain inheritance from the other spouse simply from marital status, and neither spouse has a claim to the other spouse’s retirement, insurance, or any other benefit. The court can’t divvy the property as it would be divided up from a divorce. In this case, the couple needs to assess their own property as best as they can, and get themselves back to the financial position they had prior to the marriage, with no assistance from the court.

Permanent alimony isn’t usually given with annulment cases. But, there is standard in Florida that if a spouse is considered an “innocent victim” of the other’s abuse, the spouse can be given permanent alimony as an act of fairness.

Grounds for Annulment

There are a number of reasons upon which a judge will grant the annulment of marriage, finishing the union and lawfully eliminating its presence, for example:

  • Underage unions that happened without parental approval
  • The union occurred while both parties were under the influence of alcohol or narcotics
  • Either party was impotent at the time of union
  • Either party utilized fraud, force, or duress to induce another into union
  • Neither party possesses the emotional capacity to consent to marriage
  • Either party was divorced in the 30 day period prior to the union and hid this fact
  • The union license was issued in under 72 hours.

By demonstrating at least one of these situations in court, you could be able to own your marriage legally annulled.

If you need more information contact an experienced annulment lawyer for more details.