How is annulment different from divorce?
Photo of Attorneys T. Noel Brooks and Jesse Baez walking outside.
Photo of T. Noel Brooks and Jesse Baez

How is annulment different from divorce?

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2022 | Family Law

There are many reasons why your marriage in the state of Virginia may come to an end. You may not be getting along with your spouse due to personal or financial differences. You may suspect them of infidelity or criminal activity. Whatever the reason is, you need to know the difference between divorce and annulment.

What is the legal definition of divorce?

Divorce is a very common topic in the realm of family law. The official legal definition of divorce is the legal dissolution and subsequent termination of a marriage. The process is designed to end the marriage. There will also be attention paid toward the distribution of assets. The welfare of any children who came from the marriage will also be considered.

What is the legal definition of annulment?

Annulment is a somewhat different legal process. It will involve a ruling that states that the marriage is officially erased. In other words, the entire marriage is null and void and was never legally enacted in the first place. It should be noted that even if it is erased, the records will remain on file.

Why seek annulment instead of a divorce?

There are a number of reasons why you may find it more convenient to seek an annulment instead of a divorce. This type of marriage dissolution is usually adopted by one or both of the parties involved. One or both of them may believe that there is something about the marriage that serves to render it null and void.

Conditions for annulment can include incest, mental disability, one of the spouses not being of legal age, bigamy, or the concealment of past criminal history. The process can be as tedious and costly as a divorce unless a settlement is reached in advance.