Queens Annulment Lawyers
An annulment terminates a marriage. It is as though the marriage never existed. A civil annulment and a religious annulment are the 2 types of annulments in the United States. A civil annulment is a court order that voids (invalidates) a marriage. The Supreme Court of New York (a general jurisdiction court) issues the judgment. A diocesan tribunal of the Catholic Church issues a declaration of nullity. Here is some information to help you understand civil and religious annulments:
Basic Process of Civil Annulment
If you want a civil annulment, it is to get the advice of an annulment lawyer. The legal professional will know the state law requirements for an annulment. An annulment lawyer will help you determine if a civil annulment is the option for you.
Each state has its own particular rules and regulations about civil annulments. The majority of states do have basic processes for obtaining a civil annulment:
A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that there were 813,862 annulments and divorces in the United States. Civil annulments and divorces have one thing in common; they both end marriages. There are some differences in these 2 types of legal procedures. A civil annulment does not acknowledge the existence of a marriage. A divorce still recognizes the marriage after it ends. After an annulment, each party will have the same financial status as before the marriage. Finances often cause delays in obtaining a divorce.
Sometimes a court does not grant an annulment. The parties may be able to proceed with a divorce proceeding. Some states require parties to fill out new documents for a divorce. Legal professionals will help parties decide the steps for a civil annulment or divorce.
Grounds for a Civil Annulment
Every state has its own various grounds for civil annulments. There must be some justifiable reasons to obtain a civil annulment. You also have to be the injured party. This is why it is important to have representation from a civil attorney. A legal professional can help you decide which grounds meet your circumstances.
There are 2 types of marriages in the State of New York, which have grounds for an annulment. These are void and voidable marriages. A void marriage is invalid from the start of the matrimony. Here are some examples of void marriages:
An incestuous marriage occurs when spouses marry while knowing they are close relatives. Here are some types of incest:
• Whole siblings
• Half siblings
• Aunts or uncles
• First cousin
Bigamy is another act. A person weds someone, but he or she is still married to another person.
A voidable marriage is a legal marriage. This type of marriage can receive an annulment based on the following grounds:
One ground is a lack of consent. A person does not have the mental capacity to understand they are getting married. Here are some examples of lack of consent:
Some other grounds are fraud and misrepresentation. The grounds occur when a spouse lies about something. The truth is important for the survival of the relationship. Here are some examples of fraud and misrepresentation:
• Stating able to have children when not possible
• Marrying to become a citizen
• Not truthful about their legal age to marry
Another ground is concealment. A spouse hides an important detail about their past or present life. These are some instances of concealment:
• Prison conviction
• Children from a previous relationship
• Mental illness
• Drug abuse
A spouse needs to talk to an annulment lawyer for any questions they have on waiving grounds. A spouse can waive certain grounds in the State of New York:
• Underage spouse cohabitates with spouse past age of majority
• Maintains living with spouse after finding out about fraud
• Cohabitates with mentally ill spouse during state of sound mind
The Catholic Church calls an annulment a “declaration of nullity.” Catholic World Reports state that there were 35,009 declarations of nullity in the U.S. in 2007. The Catholic Church has requirements for a marriage to be valid. If a spouse falls short of one or more of the requirements, the Church can issue a declaration of nullity:
• Free to marry
• Can consent to marry
• Volunteers to consent
• Intends to stay married
• Good objectives toward each other
• Marries in presence of 2 witnesses and authorized Church minister
Contact Queens Annulment Lawyers for information on annulments. The attorneys will be able to answer your questions. The legal professionals will also give you sound advice.
In New York, marriage can be officially ended in two ways: annulment or divorce. Divorce is the termination of a valid marriage. However, annulment acts like a “cancellation” of an existing marriage. With an annulment, a marriage is declared to have never been valid to begin with. Legally speaking, an annulment makes it as though you were never married.
The Rarity of Annulments
Annulments are far rarer than divorces. This is because annulments need to meet a set of highly specific and rare circumstances. Basically, you need to prove that the original marriage union was never valid for some reason. If you can’t prove the marriage was invalid, you’ll need to get a divorce to end the marriage. Another option in New York is legal separation. Legal separation has many of the same negotiations as divorce, but you remain married. With a divorce, you can remarry; with a legal separation, you can’t.
These are some of the circumstances in which an annulment can be obtained:
- One or both of the spouses was underage at the time of the marriage, and therefore unable to consent
- One or both of the spouses was mentally incapacitated or incapable of understanding the marriage, and therefore unable to consent
- One of the spouses was under duress, and therefore their consent was compromised
- One spouse was misled or lied to prior to the marriage, making the marriage contract invalid
- The relationship was incestuous, and therefore forbidden by law
- One spouse was still legally married to another person
All of these circumstances have one thing in common. They involve a marriage contract that was never validated due to compromised consent, inaccurate information, or unlawful behavior. The state cannot recognize a marriage contract that does not apply by its own laws. Because of this, the marriage is treated as though it did not exist.
Another thing to note is that in all of these circumstances, the marriage could have been invalidated at the time it happened. The fact that it was not is a mistake on the part of the court system.
What If the Marriage Isn’t Consummated?
Historically speaking, a couple is supposed to consummate their marriage on their wedding night to make the marriage “official.” There have been historical cases in which a marriage was annulled because it was never consummated. However, lack of consummation is not a valid grounds for annulment in the state of New York.
There is one possible exception to this rule. If one of the spouses has a condition that renders them permanently impotent, and they did not tell their spouse about it prior to the marriage, there may be grounds for annulment. In these cases, there is a case that fraud was involved in the lack of disclosure.
However, if you want this to work as grounds for annulment, you need to prove the following things:
- The spouse is impotent
- The spouse’s condition is permanent
- The spouse knew about the condition prior to the marriage
- The spouse did not tell you about the condition prior to the marriage
If you can’t sufficiently prove every aspect of this situation, you won’t have properly established a fraud case.
Religious and legal annulment are two different procedures. If you get your marriage legally annulled, this means that you have never been married in the eyes of the court. However, depending on your religious affiliation, you may still be married in the eyes of your church.
If you want an annulment because you cannot divorce due to religious reasons, you might want to consider a legal separation. In a legal separation, you remain married to your spouse. This is also a good option if you have hopes of reconciliation.
Like a divorce, though, you’ll divide all your marital assets, make child custody arrangements, and negotiate varying support payments. A legal separation involves almost all the same details as a divorce, but it doesn’t legally end your marriage. You can be legally separated in New York for up to 2 years.
Can I contest an annulment?
There are two ways to end a marriage in the US. You can either file for divorce or file for an annulment. Filing for an annulment is quicker way to end a marriage without having to separate assets. Many people often wonder whether they can contest an annulment. Yes, you can contest an annulment.
Definition of Annulment
An annulment is basically a legal procedure that seeks to cancel a marriage between a man and a woman. When a marriage is annulled, it is legally erased. The annulment declares that the marriage was invalid or never existed. Either party can initiate an annulment. However, the one filing for the annulment must have a valid reason so as to convince the judges to rule in his or her favor.
Reasons for an Annulment
When a man or a woman in a marriage files for an annulment, he or she wishes to have a legal permission to claim that the marriage never existed at all. This means he or she will not be entitled to any kind of property distribution or spousal support. The main reasons why someone may seek an annulment include the inability to have sexual relations, fraud, mental illness, bigamy or duress.
Contesting an Annulment
An annulment involves the petitioner and the respondent. If the respondent provides an answer to the petition, then it means the annulment will most likely be contested. As a person seeking the annulment to be revoked, you cannot simply tell the court to grant you the permission to remain married. Instead, you need to challenge the grounds the petitioner relied on to seek the annulment in the first place. If the ground listed is mental illness, you will need to argue that you don’t have any mental problem. This may require a medical confirmation from a mental doctor. If the ground was fraud, you can argue that the fraud never occurred.
When you answer the petition as a respondent, the court will establish a hearing date. During the hearing, you will have to present your arguments before the judges to convince them to rescind their decision. It is important to note that the task of proving the validity of the annulment mainly lies with the one who petitioned. He or she must prove, for instance, that you are mentally unfit in order for the annulment to hold. The judges will decide whether or not the annulment will still hold, depending on how you argue your case.
Filing for Divorce
In case your spouse chooses to file for an annulment, it does not mean you cannot file for a divorce. Filing for a divorce is a still an option, and you can choose to do it anytime. However, when you file for a divorce, it means you are liable for spousal support or property distribution.
Granting an Annulment
It is often very difficult for the judges to grant an annulment. This may be to the benefit of the spouse protesting the annulment. He or she will have an upper hand during the hearing and may force the other spouse to file for a divorce instead of an annulment. A divorce is a better choice, especially if there is a large amount of money or valuable property at stake.
Hire a Divorce Lawyer
The process of contesting an annulment or filing for divorce is very complicated. There are a lot of legal terms you have to understand and paperwork to handle. This can be overwhelming if you have no legal experience. We recommend hiring a family lawyer immediately to help you navigate the intricate legal process. A lawyer can change what could have been a legally disastrous problem into one where you and your spouse’s interests will be taken care of. Consider a lawyer who has a good track record dealing with annulments and divorce.