Marriages don’t always work out. Some spouses know sooner than others or for precise reasons that the marriage will not last or should not. If you are wondering if you should file for a divorce or an annulment, seek legal advice as soon as possible.
While an annulment and a divorce have some similarities, and both cases benefit from the legal knowledge and guidance of a Sugar Land annulment lawyer, there are some stark differences that anyone seeking to end their marriage needs to know about. One of them is that annulments can only be granted under particular sets of circumstances.
How is an Annulment Different than a Divorce?
Texas family law makes a distinct difference between the validity of a marriage with divorces and annulments. A divorce is a legal end to a valid marriage. On the other hand, an annulment makes it, so the marriage was never legally valid to begin with. If a couple is granted an annulment, in the eyes of the law, their marriage never existed. However, annulments are only granted under specific circumstances under Texas laws.
Will You Qualify for An Annulment?
A Sugar Land annulment attorney can assess your situation to help determine if you should file for a divorce or an annulment. If a couple files for divorce in Texas, they can plead “no-fault,” allowing them not to provide a ground for the divorce. Texas family courts require those seeking annulments to demonstrate the reasons why their marriage qualifies for one. You might qualify for an annulment if:
- Underage: You or your spouse are at least 16 but less than 18 years of age and your marriage did not occur with parental consent or a court order (without a court order for the marriage, any marriage involving someone under the age of 16 will be considered void under Texas law)
- Intoxicated: If the spouse filing for the annulment was under the influence of alcohol or drugs which causes them to lack the facilities to consent to the marriage and the spouses did not agree to live together after they were no longer intoxicated
- Impotency: When the legal marriage occurred, one party was permanently impotent, and the other party was unaware, and there was no voluntarily cohabitation since becoming aware of it
- Fraud or duress: If the person filing for an annulment only agree to the marriage under duress, force or fraud and did not voluntarily live with the spouse
- Mental capacity: The mental capacity of either spouse under certain situations
- Concealed divorce: If the person filing for divorce did not know that the other spouse had been divorced less than 30 days prior to the commencement of their marriage and did not choose to live with the other spouse since learning of this fact
- Marriage of fewer than 72 hours: If the couple’s wedding ceremony occurred within 72 hours of receiving a marriage license, either spouse can request an annulment within 30 days following the ceremony
- Consanguinity: The court will void the marriage if the two parties are related too closely by blood, at least as close as first cousins
- Pre-existing marriage: If either spouse was already in a legally binding marriage when the marriage ceremony took place, their marriage will be voided by the court. It’s important to note however that if either party continues to live with the other and represent to others that they are married, their marriage can become valid if the earlier marriage is dissolved
Speak to an Experienced Sugar Land Annulment Lawyer
At Jaime Jordan Zand, PLLC, we are here to help, no matter your situation. If you need more information about an annulment vs. a divorce in Texas, seek the advice of an experienced Sugar Land annulment attorney to see if your individual circumstances meet the legal criteria, and what the benefits of seeking this option might be. Learn more about our annulment and divorce services by scheduling your legal consultation today. Call (832) 463-4933 or reach out to us online.