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Annulment

Annulment in Texas An annulment is distinctly different from a divorce. In a divorce, a dissolution of the marriage occurs, which means that in the eyes of the law, you were still married at one point in your life. In an annulment, the marriage is considered null and void from the beginning, and legally, you have never been married.

There are several personal reasons why some people would choose annulment over divorce, whether it’s the social stigma of being a divorcee, or because some people find it easier to be able to remarry if they have an earlier marriage annulled, rather than have a divorce.

Criteria for AnnulmentHere in Austin, Texas, there are numerous qualifications that can allow a person to opt for an annulment rather than a divorce, however, it is up to the petitioner to present evidence that proves their eligibility for the annulment. These qualifications, as stated in Chapter 6 of the Texas Family Code, include:
  • The inability to obtain a legal divorce (for example, if your county does not recognize a legal divorce);
  • Fraud and material misrepresentation which induced spouse to marry. Examples of fraud include, for example, non-disclosure of a prior marriage by your spouse, or of children from a previous marriage; Non-disclosure of having divorced another person within 30 days of your marriage;
  • The use of duress or force;
  • You or your spouse being under the age of 16 when the marriage took place;
  • Getting married within 72 hours of receiving your marriage license;
  • Mental incapacitation to understand the responsibilities and duties of marriage due to mental illness;
  • Either parties being under the influence of drugs or alcohol during the marriage, and did not have the ability to consent;
  • Your spouse suffering from impotency and spouse did not cohabit voluntarily after learning about impotency;
  • An incestuous relationship;
  • Non-disclosure of a felony conviction or addiction;

In summary, there are seven major grounds for annulment that involve marriage of an underage spouse, influence of drugs and alcohol, impotency, fraud, duress, force, mental incapacity, concealed divorce and marriage less than 72hours after the license.

Once you are able to prove that you entered the marriage without being aware of these circumstances, you are eligible for an annulment. However, there are guidelines for qualifying under several of the circumstances above. There are many fact scenarios that may qualify for annulment. For example, if you enter into a marriage under the influence of alcohol or drugs, but then willingly lived with your spouse after sobering up, then you are no longer eligible for annulment under the intoxication qualification.

Determining if you are qualified for annulment in Texas requires careful review of the facts involved. Our experienced Texas divorce and annulment attorney can help you sort of the facts and determine eligibility. Attorney Daniella Lyttle and her staff here at Lyttle Law Firm are dedicated to finding the best legal solution for your marital problems.