Roseville, CA Divorce Lawyer
Seeking an annulment? Hire a family law attorney.
The process of an annulment can vary from state to state so it is important to work with a Roseville divorce attorney that understands the specific procedures. An annulment is the process of nullifying the marriage or domestic partnership and asking the court to no longer view it as valid. While a divorce seeks to end the marriage, an annulment makes it as if it never truly happened. It takes away the legal standing of it. There are pros and cons to each situation that you should be informed of before moving forward with the process.
Legal Reasons for an Annulment
An annulment is a favorable alternative for many individuals that have entered into a relationship they realize is not right for them. The process of a divorce can be difficult and an annulment can allow the chance to sidestep many of these obstacles. Not just anyone can obtain this option and there must be certain factors present during the process. These include the following:
- There is a preexisting domestic partnership or marriage: In this situation either of the parties may already be married. This case is different from bigamy because the individual would have thought their former spouse was dead or had been missing for at least five years.
- Existence of Fraud: An annulment may be an option if it turns out one of the parties is guilty of fraud. This may be hiding important information or having ulterior motives for the marriage.
- Young age: If an individual was younger than 18 when they entered into the marriage, this can be a reason for the annulment to be sought.
- Physical incapacitation: One of the individuals had a physical incapacity at the time of the marriage and the longer the relationship continued the more they realized that the incapacitation would not be healed.
- Use of force: Sometimes force is used to persuade someone to enter into the relationship. If a person did not enter into the relationship willingly, it can be reason for it to be invalidated.
- Unsound mind: If a spouse is found to be of unsound mind, the other spouse can file, as can a conservator or relative of the individual with the limitation. This should be done prior to the death of either individual.
A marriage may already be declared invalid without the individuals even seeking an annulment in two cases. This includes if the two individuals are actually closely related through blood or if a domestic partnership or marriage already exists with another individual. These two cases are illegal and can have a marriage declared as invalid.
The Outcome of an Annulment
Once an annulment has been obtained, a number of things can change. For a couple that files for divorce or for legal separation, there can be certain obligations that are necessary, such as spousal support. These will not be valid in a case of annulment.
In regards to property, the community property laws of the state will not be applicable and cannot be used to determine the means to separate property and debt. An exception to this is in a case where an individual has "putative" spouse status. In these instances there may be a chance to acquire support or property rights. When an annulment is granted and children are involved in the case, the judge will decide on parentage. After this has been done, there may be the possibility to receive child support or custody and visitation rights.
Is there a time limit for an annulment?
As with other legal matters, there is a statute of limitations that exists for annulments. If the deadline has passed then it will be necessary to file for a divorce or separation as an alternative. There are several factors that influence the time limit for being eligible to file for an annulment. If fraud exists, filing must be done within four years from the time it was discovered. For a person that was under the age of 18 at the time of the marriage, filing can be done up to four years after turning 18. Four years from the time of marriage is the limit for filing in a case of physical incapacitation.
In an unsound mind case, a spouse can file, as can a conservator or relative of the individual of unsound mind. If there is another marriage or domestic partnership that exists, filing for an annulment can be done by either side as long as they are both alive, or can be filed by the previous spouse. When force has been used, there are four years from the time of the marriage that filing can still be done.
Filing for Annulment with a Roseville Attorney
At Law Offices of Frank F. Ali we are well qualified in divorce matters and work with clients to find a solution to their case, including through utilizing the option of an annulment. An annulment can be highly beneficial in a difficult situation and this can be further enhanced by turning to the understanding of an experienced professional. We can start by reviewing your case and determining if you are eligible for an annulment. We can also help throughout the process to provide a quicker, more efficient experience. Don't wait to call us and get started with your future.
Call (916) 745-8444 today for a legal consultation.