Annulment and divorce are two different things. While a divorce ends your marriage, an annulment treats it as if it never happened. However, an annulment is only an option in specific circumstances, such as where the marriage in question was never legally valid.
For some people, the annulment process is more attractive than a traditional divorce since it does not appear on public records. If you have questions about whether an annulment is an option in your situation, work with a trusted family attorney from the Atlanta Divorce Law Group. An Alpharetta annulment lawyer can help you learn what steps to take and provide guidance throughout the entire process.
Getting an annulment has some things in common with filing for divorce. At the end of the annulment, a couple is no longer legally married. However, the process to get to that point is very different. When the judge annuls a marriage, they render the union null and void as if it never took place. Annulments also require a couple to meet specific criteria and provide evidence of their eligibility, whereas a divorce is much more common and easier to attain.
There are typically fewer financial and property division concerns with annulments since the process effectively erases the marriage, giving neither party a right to the other’s assets. This also renders any marital agreements invalid.
When it comes to the custody of children, either scenario requires the court to consider the best interests of the children. Parents must agree on a custody arrangement or allow the judge to determine one during a court hearing. An experienced attorney from our firm can help a couple who is seeking an annulment in Alpharetta or elsewhere in Georgia understand their legal rights and obligations.
Just like with a divorce case, there are legal requirements that must be met before the judge can annul a marriage. In general, annulment is only an option when there is an issue that prevents the union from ever being legal to begin with.
Annulments are often based on allegations of fraud. For example, there are valid grounds for annulment when a person represents they are able to have children when they are not. Annulment could also be a viable option when a person can show they were either tricked or coerced into getting married. Other grounds for an annulment include:
Someone who does not meet the requirements for having their marriage annulled would instead have to pursue a divorce. An attorney from our firm can review the criteria for an annulment in more detail during a confidential meeting and help a person determine which dissolution process best suits their needs.
If you are considering annulment, it is a good idea to speak with an attorney first. This process has strict requirements, and not everyone will qualify.