Divorce is the most common way for couples to end their marriages. However, in a case where the marriage was never valid, annulment might be an option. An annulment legally erases the marriage as if it never happened.
Annulments are only available under specific circumstances, and you will need the help of an experienced divorce attorney to determine whether you might be eligible. Speak with a Marietta annulment lawyer to determine whether annulling your marriage is possible.
Although annulment and divorce terminate a marriage, the two have important differences. A divorce acknowledges that a valid marriage existed and ended. An annulment legally declares that a valid marriage never occurred.
Couples sometimes seek annulment for religious reasons or to make a fresh start after a hasty marriage. Unlike some other states, Georgia law does not consider the length of a marriage relevant when it comes to annulment. However, if you and your spouse have children together, the Official Code of Georgia §19-4-1 requires you to get a divorce to end your marriage.
Annulment is only an option when a marriage violates state law. A Marrietta annulment attorney will talk with you and review your marriage’s circumstances to determine whether you can prove your marriage was invalid from the start. If so, you could seek an annulment.
An annulment is available when a spouse can prove that one of both spouses could not legally marry when the marriage occurred. Reasons for being unable to legally marry include being under the age of 17, already married to someone else, or the spouses being blood relatives.
Fraud is another ground for annulment. You could prove fraud by showing that your spouse:
A marriage is not legally valid unless both parties are capable of understanding and consenting to it. If mental capacity to consent to marriage is an issue, a guardian could seek an annulment on behalf of the allegedly incapacitated person. The person seeking the annulment must prove the grounds they cite to have the marriage annulled. Speaking with a trusted Marietta attorney is the best way to determine whether you have grounds to pursue an annulment.
Like divorce, seeking an annulment requires at least one spouse to be a resident of Georgia for at least six months before submitting a petition for action. One spouse can seek an annulment even if the other objects.
If you are the spouse seeking the annulment, you must file the petition in the Superior Court in the county where you or your spouse reside. You must then arrange to serve your spouse the petition and supporting papers. A Marietta annulment attorney can prepare the petition and handle the filing and service for you.
Once the court receives proof that the other party has received the papers, it will schedule a hearing. If your spouse attends the hearing and objects to the annulment, the court will consider your evidence of grounds for annulment. If your spouse does not attend or does not object, the court will issue an order of annulment, which legally erases the marriage. It will take effect in 30 days, and you will be legally single and free to remarry.
If you believe your marriage was invalid from the beginning, you could request an annulment. An annulment makes it so that, legally, your marriage never happened.
Annulments are available only in specific circumstances. Trust a Marietta annulment lawyer to evaluate whether it is a viable option for you. If so, our team can handle the paperwork and support you throughout the process. Call the Atlanta Divorce Law Group today.