Unlike divorce or dissolution, which ends a valid marriage, an annulment is a court decision that considers that the marriage is not legally valid. Thus, after obtaining an annulment, the marriage is deemed to have never occurred.
A variety of reasons can be used for filing a divorce case. However, an annulment of marriage requires a specific set of criteria to be considered by a court. One common misconception is that the length of marriage influences whether you can get an annulment. In reality, even if you were married only for a short time, you may not be eligible for an annulment.
There are complex factors that influence whether an annulment of marriage is possible. With the help of experienced Sacramento divorce attorney Alan Mikshansky, you will have the information and representation you need to achieve the most favorable outcome for you. As a specialist in family law, Alan Mikshansky can determine whether your marriage meets the burden of proof for annulment and how much time you have before the statute of limitations runs out.
Evaluating Your Family Law Situation
In California, courts will use a specific set of criteria to declare your marriage void or invalid. The grounds for obtaining an annulment of marriage include:
- Lack of statutory formalization procedures such as licensing, solemnization, and authentication.
- Faulty legal requirements such as marriages that involve incest, bigamy, parties that are minor.
- Marriages that were subject to fraud such as concealment of sterility or an existing pregnancy.
- Marriages that were subject to force.
- Physical incapacity, meaning that either party was physically incapable of consummating the relationship.
- A prior existing marriage, meaning that either party was already legally married.
- Unsound mind, meaning that either party was unable to understand the subject matter of the marriage contract and the obligations that come with it.
Statute Of Limitations
The statute of limitations is the legal deadline for filing for an annulment of marriage, after which only divorce is available to you. For example, if one of the parties was a minor at the time of the marriage, but, after attaining age 18, “freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife” [CA Family Code § 2210(a)], the marriage may not be eligible for an annulment.
Other examples include a deadline of 4 years from the time of getting married in the case of force or physical incapacity and 4 years from the time of discovering the fraud in the case of a fraudulent marriage.
Marital Asset Rights in a California Annulment of Marriage
The California community property laws that protect the parties during a divorce do not apply in the case of an annulment of marriage. The Law Office of Alan Mikshansky will help you determine which assets are “quasi-marital”––property that would have been community or quasi-community had the marriage been valid. These assets may still be considered community property and subject to division as if they were community property.
California Divorce Attorney
As a divorce attorney, Alan Mikshansky will study your circumstances and help you identify whether your marriage may be annulled. By scheduling an annulment of marriage consultation with Alan Mikshansky, you will get the guidance you need for your particular case and ensure that your rights are protected.
Alan Mikshansky will represent you at a court with proper jurisdiction to void your marriage. If the marriage is not voidable, you may instead proceed with a regular divorce. Based on the court’s judgment, Alan Mikshansky will also review your situation and represent you in the case of a possibility for parentage, child or financial support, or attorney fees.
The Law Office of Alan Mikshansky is certified in Family Law by the State Bar of California’s Board of Legal Specialization.