What Are The Grounds For An Annulment ?  

       While a divorce shows that there was a marriage but now it is over, an annulment states that the marriage never really existed. Therefore, one can say that a divorce looks for reasons to end the marriage, an annulment looks for reasons to declare the marriage null and void.

          Based on this, it can be said that an annulment concentrates more on the legal and moral aspects rather than blaming one of the parties.

          The laws for annulment in the US vary from state to state. However, annulment can be granted for one of the following reasons:

  • One of the spouses was legally married to another person when the marriage took place.
  • One of the spouses was a minor when the marriage took place and did not have consent from the parents or the court.
  • One of the spouses was under the influence of alcohol or drugs when the marriage ceremony was performed.
  • One of the spouses was forced or threatened into the marriage.
  • One of the spouses was impotent or sterile when the marriage took place and this condition was incurable.
  • The spouses are related to one another closely and thereby making the marriage illegal in the eyes of the law.
  • One of the spouses stated or represented something in a fraudulent manner to allow the marriage to take place.

 

          Based on these above circumstances, the reasons are divided into void marriage and voidable marriage. A void marriage occurs when any reason prevents the marriage from being legal. This usually is seen when close relatives marry. While a voidable marriage takes place under circumstances that would have otherwise been different. In other words, the person would not have married had the circumstances been any different. Reasons that can lead to a voidable marriage are infertility, fraud and marrying someone under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

          However, a voidable marriage can be deemed legal in case the circumstances change. For example, if a couple marries only to discover later one that one of spouses is impotent or sterile, the aggrieved spouse can get the marriage annulled provided if it is proven that the other spouse knew about the condition but did not disclose it. And the other scenario is that the couple knows about the sterility or impotency but continue to live together as married couple. This way the marriage is deemed legal and no annulment is granted.

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What Are The Grounds For An Annulment ?
 
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