If you are thinking of ending your marriage, this might be one of the most difficult times in your life. While divorce is the most common way that individuals end a marriage, annulment is another way couples can end a marriage. However, the legal ramifications of divorce are different than those for annulment, and the requirements to seek an annulment are much higher than the requirements to seek a divorce. In most cases, the only option available to a married couple will be divorce. However, there are some situations where an annulment might be possible.
What is the major difference between an annulment and divorce? With an annulment, the marriage is found by the courts to have not been valid in the first place. This might be due to legal technicalities or fraud when the marriage took place. With a divorce, the marriage is recognized as valid. With an annulment, there is no marital property, debt, or alimony to be paid, because there is no marriage to speak of. With divorce, the couple will likely have to negotiate a divorce settlement involving division of property, debts, and possible alimony. Not sure whether you can seek an annulment? Not sure whether you should seek an annulment? Want to end your marriage in Jackson, Mississippi? Ballard Law, PLLC is a divorce lawyer who can help you find the best course forward when it comes to ending your marriage.
When Can I Seek an Annulment in Jackson, Mississippi?
Couples can only seek an annulment in limited circumstances and the burden of proof will be high. You’ll need to prove that the marriage was not valid. Here are some ways couples can do so:
- You or Your Partner Were Underage. If you or your partner were under 18 years old when you got married, you might be able to seek an annulment on the account that you were underage. However, if you both turned 18 and now live together, the courts might consider your marriage valid.
- It is not legal to be married to more than one person at a time. However, it can happen if there was a clerical error when you or your partner filed for divorce. There are a range of circumstances where there might not be a record of a divorce on file. If this happens, you might be able to seek an annulment for your marriage on account of bigamy.
- Did you learn about your partner’s children, debts, legal trouble, incarceration, illness, or other major issue after you were married. If you entered into the marriage under false pretenses, you may be able to seek an annulment for fraud. If your partner lied to you about his or her inability to have children, for example, it may be possible to seek an annulment.
- If you learn you are related to the person you married, you may be able to seek an annulment. This isn’t common, but it’s one of the grounds for annulment.
- Drunkenness or Inebriation. Had a wild night? Woke up married? You may be able to seek an annulment on the grounds that you were too drunk to understand the nature of the marriage contract when you signed on the dotted line.
- Mental Incapacity. Some individuals suffer from mental illnesses where they lose touch with reality or are unable to make decisions for themselves. If you suffer from psychosis, mania, or an illness that can impact your memory or decision-making abilities, you may be able to seek an annulment if you weren’t aware of the nature of the marriage contract when you signed off on it.
These are just a few of the circumstances where an annulment may be possible. Just because you can seek an annulment doesn’t mean you might want to. An annulment can sometimes deny you certain important rights and benefits that divorce can provide. Which course of action is best for you? Every situation will be unique. Ballard Law, PLLC is a divorce law firm in Jackson, Mississippi who may be able to assist you with seeking a divorce or an annulment.
Annulments Law Firm
The benefits and drawbacks of seeking an annulment must be weighed before each party pursues one as a course of ending a marriage. If you have children, you’ll need a parenting plan and will need to have a child support arrangement, whether you are annulling your marriage or getting divorced. If you have property in common with your partner, divorce and annulment will lead to very different outcomes and results. Not sure what course of action is best? Speak to Ballard Law, PLLC, a divorce lawyer in Jackson, Mississippi today, or connect with USAttorneys.com to get matched with an attorney at Ballard Law today.