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Annulment

What Should You Know About The Effects on Children

What Should You Know About The Effects on Children

Generally speaking, the average annulment occurs after only a month of marriage. Within such a short time frame the likelihood of consummation is somewhat diminutive. Even as a rarity, the situation of children and legitimacy issues is something that should be widely known.
Children born during any marriage are considered legitimate. Like a divorce, an annulment does not change the legitimacy of a child. If the baby is born under incest, drug abuse, or any other horrible circumstance, the child will still be considered legitimate, post annulment. Annulments and divorce vary in many ways but, one similarity they do share, is in regards to children and their legality. If a couple seeking an annulment has a child, the courts will utilize the same exact processes as if the couple were getting a divorce. 
Custody will be determined, either based on state choice, or on the parent’s willingness and suitability to raise. Akin to many divorce cases, the child custody battles in an annulment case can be brutal and impassioned. Also like a divorce, child custody payments may be ordered in an annulment case depending on circumstances. 
An annulment that takes place in the Catholic Church also has the same viewpoints on the children’s legitimacy. Catholics believe that the birth of a child is a gift from god. Deeming a child to be illegitimate would be a great sin for a Catholic. According to the church, any child born during a marriage that ended in annulment is considered to be legitimate. 
The biggest issue with children and an annulment is not the legitimacy of the child, but instead, the red tape and cost associated. In addition to complications revolving around child support payments and custody, a child’s birth adds hours of paperwork to the annulment process. With an increase in work, comes a decrease in opportunity. Due to the larger costs, many states and jurisdictions will turn down applications for an annulment if a child is present. 
Dissimilar to other instances, hiring an annulment lawyer is necessary if a child is involved. The process, although arduous, will be streamlined greatly with the assistance of an attorney. Again, the legitimacy of a child is not in question, but understanding the process is necessary if an annulment is in your near future.

What to Expect in Court

What to Expect in Court

Given the general unfamiliarity towards the annulment process, there are many misunderstandings associated with one’s expectations in court. Grasping the legal process of an annulment of marriage, will make for a less stressful and time-consuming case. There are two forums in which an annulment can take place, the church and a civil court. Devout Catholics who are concerned with re-marriage should have their annulment recognized by a religious administrator. Those who are seeking a cancellation of the marriage contract without religious judgment should enter a civil case. 
The differences between the two procedures revolve around the separation between church and state. In a civil case, after the petitions have been filled and both spouses are aware of their court dates, the annulment of marriage process begins with an investigation by the prosecutor. Legal counsel that is responsible for overseeing the case will prepare a public report to determine whether collusion exists among the individuals participating in the annulment of marriage. 
If the court suspects that collusion is present, the hearing will be dismissed. When the annulment hearing passes this encumbrance, conference prior to the trial can be confirmed. During this mandatory procedure, the court and parties will briefly overview the stipulation of facts to expedite the proceedings. If the petitioner fails to show up for this conference the annulment will be dismissed immediately. The courts may also include a mediator or social worker to conduct case studies and assist with the annulment of marriage. 
The trial for an annulment is a similar setting to that of a divorce -a courtroom where the grounds for annulment is either approved or disposed by the judge. Following the trial, the court will render its decision by either granting or dismissing the petition of an annulment of marriage. This deliberation becomes final upon the expiration of 15 days from notice to the parties. An appeal can be granted to the aggravated party within 15 days from notice of denial or for reconsideration for a new trial. 
Liquidation and distribution of assets as well as child custody will be displaced by the courts upon immediate acceptance of the annulment. After the annulment of marriage is established, a decree of annulment will be issued by the courts solidifying the invalidity of the marriage. This decree is an official document, an overview of sorts, stipulating the clauses and movement of cash, property, and child custody rights. Depending on distribution factors and contestants involved an annulment can take as little as a month or as a long as a year to be completed.
If one is planning an annulment expect a very long and tedious court process. The actual court appearance is similar to a series of traffic tickets or occupational contract disputes. Annulment laws vary based on the state and can be particularly cloudy depending on circumstance. Knowledge of the individual laws is paramount in obtaining a successful annulment of marriage.

An Overview to Annulment

An Overview to Annulment

Background
Although both an annulment and divorce terminate a marriage; differences exist in the process, aftereffects, and means for obtaining. Unlike a divorce, which recognizes that a marriage at one point existed, an annulment is retroactive and dissolves the wedding completely. An annulment finds a violation that eliminates the couple from entering into an eternal bond, it is a tool that cancels out the marital contract from happening. Divorce is granted on the couples discretion, while an annulment must violate a processes legal aid. 
Process
The process to annul a marriage is often tedious and impersonal. Unlike a divorce there is little interaction between spouses when obtaining a decree of nullity. The procedure starts with a Legal assistance 

Annulment Forms
The process to obtain a decree of nullity contains legislative red tape, numerous forms, and most importantly, patience. The starting point for a marriage annulment is a petition. Similar to the form used to file for divorce, the petition will ask basic questions such as, residence and occupation in addition to personal questions such as, problems during marriage or reasons for getting married. The petition contains approximately 10 pages and acts as the summons for the respondent, all the information for the trial, and even testimony itself. All information including joint property, debts, assets, and violations of the marital contract are present in this form.

Annulment Lawyers
Often times overlooked, an annulment lawyer can be a vital resource given the circumstances and assets involved in the case. Since an annulment awards property rights and child custody like a divorce an annulment lawyer’s importance can be paramount. Convincing a judge that a party is insane, impotent, or guilty of fraud is difficult for those inexperienced at trial law. 
An annulment lawyer will not only aid by producing an argument against the respondent, but also by clarifying the ambiguity of varying state laws and legislation. If an annulment is established within a few weeks of marriage and there is a direct violation against the marital contract, then an annulment lawyer’s value dissipates. In order to determine the necessity of legal aid one must adopt a useful cost-benefit analysis.
Like most legal code, interpretations and rulings of annulment laws vary based on state and jurisdiction. The general conflict of law question pertains to individuals marrying in one state, and filing for an annulment in another. The filing of the annulment petition must take place in your place of residence. However, the annulment laws are carried out based on the celebration state’s (state where wedding took place) interpretations. 
Ambiguity lies within contrasting laws for states. Marriage between first cousins or incest is grounds for an annulment in some states but not others. The underlying question in regards to a state upholding an annulment request is based on its public policy. Before entering such a process one must grasp the specific annulment laws of both his place of residence and the celebration state.

Effect on Children
A common misconception concerning marriage annulments is the question pertaining to children rights and legitimacy. Due to their religious background, children are viewed as legitimate after a decree of nullity is obtained, no matter the circumstances. The Catholic church views any child born, no matter the situation, as sacred. Consummation via incest, infidelity, force, or any other action that would deem the marriage void, is still considered legitimate. Similar to a divorce trial, a child’s rights and custody will be distributed based on the parent’s competence and situation. Due to the typical length associated with annulled marriages and opportunity costs a court system incurs by administering such a case. The presence of children during an annulment trial is rare. 

Availability of an annulment
Unlike a divorce an annulment can only be granted if a violation of church law is present at the wedding ceremony. Decrees of nullity revolve around the exchange of wedding vows and the procedural requirements of the wedding itself. The vows or “contract” of the marriage must be upheld so the sanctity of the bond can be fulfilled. These stipulations include fidelity, eternity, and consummation. Annulments are not granted based on the feelings or desires of those involved in the relationship, but instead, the contract itself and the ceremony that finalized such an agreement.

What to Expect in Court
The Catholic church only considers a marriage void if a direct violation of church law occurred during the exchange of wedding vows. Unlike divorce, a couple cannot receive a religious annulment based on personal desire, spousal abuse, or unhappiness. The relationship itself is not in question, but instead, the disposition of those involved during the time of the wedding, and the ceremony itself. Once an annulment is received the religious rights will be unchanged in regards to remarrying in the church and attending mass. If a divorce is not followed by an annulment, the Church will recognize an active marriage and will not allow a Church wedding to take place. In regards to rights, a divorcee will still be allowed to attend mass, raise a family Catholic, and receive communion.


Annulment and Catholicism  
Due to the implicit connection between the Catholic church and their commitment to background theocratic dogma, the referencing of Biblical passages and allusions are not uncommon upon attempting to negotiate legal processes in the spectrum of religious faith. People who have opted to make their religion a cornerstone of their respective existences have made a commitment to allow both the country in which they reside, as well as the religious ruling doctrine under which they identify to play a symbiotic role in authorizing and substantiating the events in which they participate. 
The First Amendment the United States includes the separation of church and state in order to prevent the United States from becoming a theocracy. Although the majority of the authors of the Constitution identified themselves as Deists, meaning that they believed in the presence of a higher power, they were critical of the absence of individual liberties and freedoms that ran rampant underneath past theocratic rule.
What is an Annulment?
An annulment is a legal procedure undertaken by married individuals to denounce that their marriage never took place. The annulment process declares a marriage null and void; it is held in contrast to a divorce which recognizes that a marriage at one time took place. An annulment is therefore retroactive; an annulled marriage is considered to be invalid from the onset of the marriage.
A marriage is in essence a contract. Two individuals agree to the stipulations that the marriage enforces, and through this agreement, are connected in the eyes of the particular state government where the marriage took place. An annulment, as a result of its retroactive status, takes the contract and deems it void, which in turn rules the wedding as null.
Valid Reasons for an Annulment

There are two basic forms of annulment: an annulment in a Catholic Church and a civil annulment that is instituted by a local court system. The qualifications of a civil annulment will vary based on state, but there are several common grounds which will deem a marriage null and void. 
The basic reasons that will deliver a declaration of nullity are: if the marriage was entered into by one party through force, a threat, fraud, intoxication, or the concealment of vital information, such as the presence of children. An annulment will also be granted if one of the parties was underage at the time the marriage took place, or if the couple is closely related.
Legal Process

In the majority of states, the universal petition form used for divorce is also used to declare a marriage null and void. For an annulment, an individual simply checks the box for nullity rather than dissolution or divorce. These forms are obtained through your state or jurisdiction’s Family Law Division or county court.
The petition must be filed in the county of your residency, even if the marriage took place in another state. Similar to a divorce, there are filing fees attached to the submission of an annulment application. Typically annulments are mutual, meaning both parties will agree to declare the marriage void; however, if one party contests the initiation of an annulment, a hearing will be scheduled where both parties will present evidence to the state. 
The state will in turn review the facts of the marriage (how it was commenced and under what pretenses it was agreed upon) and base the delivery of the annulment in relation to the qualifications which can legally declare the marriage null and void.
Catholic Annulment

The Catholic Church possesses strict rules about marriage that explicitly impede the ability to allow for remarriage. Catholics, to receive an annulment, must submit themselves to an annulment process if they wish to have a second marriage recognized by the Church. An annulment will be granted by the Catholic Church if the institution finds that the marriage was entered into without discretion, or without legitimate intentions to procreate, stay together until death, or remain faithful.

Annulment and Catholicism

Annulment and Catholicism

Unfortunately for many couples, marriage is an impossible and fragile alliance. As divorce rates climb past 50% the sanctity of the holy union becomes questioned. To society, divorce represents the end of a relationship, it completely cuts off the ties that marriage once united. To the church and devout Catholics, divorce simply divides the couple’s tangible assets.
It is a legal recognition, that does not eliminate the spiritual bond created at marriage. Reasons for divorce are broad; a Catholic annulment, however, can only be granted through specific violation of Church law present during the time of marriage. 
After signaling out the violation that was present, one must go through a lengthy 
The Catholic annulment comes with a stigma that is in many ways controversial. Because of the discriminatory practices and restrictions attached to a religious annulment one must be aware of the many implications imposed on those involved in the process.

Easy Guide to Annulment Forms

Easy Guide to Annulment Forms

The process to deem a marriage null and void is lengthy and requires numerous annulment forms. To begin the procedure through a civil hearing the annulment form used to establish the trial is simply referred to as an annulment petition. Usually these annulment forms are filed with an individual state’s Superior Court.  
The petition, is comprised of roughly 10 pages and requires all information regarding one’s marriage in question. 
The first couple of pages revolve around basic information and residency. The next section will ask one personal questions regarding one’s marriage. Does one have a marriage certificate? What problems did one experience during one’s marriage? The next section of the petition will inquire about jointly owned property. A knowledge of what an individual and their respective spouse share is imperative when filling out these annulment forms. In addition to property a section is also present concerning joint debts.
Additional annulment forms such as two original summons, an automatic domestic standing order, and a sheriff’s entry of service form must be attached to the petition in order to be considered a valid request. These documents will be given to one at that time of filing, and instructions on how complete them will be attached. Like most legal actions these forms require a payment-ranges from $100 to $500. Although lengthy and time consuming these annulment forms must be registered and filled out properly in order for a trial to be commenced.

Read This Before Finding An Annulment Lawyers

Read This Before Finding An Annulment Lawyers

Finding and understanding the benefits of annulment lawyer can be a tedious and confusing task. In terms of setting and process, a civil annulment is fairly similar to a divorce. Just as most laws vary from state to state, different interpretations exist in terms of granting an annulment. Hiring legal assistance can be beneficial given the circumstance, but may be unnecessary depending on the transparency of the case. Before getting into the decision process, one must know the benefits that an annulment lawyer offers. 
Before even going to trial a legal supervisor can establish the grounds for a trial and advise whether a legitimate case is present. Given the circumstance, an annulment lawyer can offer advice on whether or not the process is appropriate or if divorce may be a better option. Although the grounds for an annulment are concise, arguing such viewpoints may prove daunting. For instance, it would be difficult to convince a judge that a spouse may have a mental illness or addiction. Without the assistance of an annulment lawyer, many individuals will lose their case because of their inability to prove on definitive grounds a disestablishment of a marital contract. The largest benefit one can receive from hiring an annulment lawyer is if a child is involved in the matter. 
Having trust, and feeling comfortable with an annulment lawyer is crucial in hopes of receiving a favorable outcome. If an individual is trying to prove that a spouse was an alcoholic or unfaithful, one must be able to open up to the annulment lawyer and offer every piece of information available in regards to the situation. When looking for annulment lawyers all resources should be utilized. The Internet is always a great database to start with. Nowadays almost every lawyer can be found online and annulment lawyers are no exception. In addition to online resources a person seeking an annulment should ask people who are experienced in the process. If a friend or acquaintance has had a good experience with annulment lawyers then by all means take advantage of it.
Like most legal advice, annulment lawyers come with a hefty fee. In order to properly weigh whether legal aid is necessary one must develop a cost benefit analysis. Given the circumstances, one side of the equation will have a personal budget and opportunity costs, while the other side will have the complexity of the case-the level of desire for obtaining an annulment, and the amount of joint possessions shared. All factors must be considered given the importance of such a procedure. If proving an impedance within the marriage is effortless save one’s money and defend oneself, but if there is any shred of ambiguity, hiring a lawyer should definitely be put into serious consideration. 

Annulment versus Divorce

Annulment versus Divorce

Although an annulment and divorce both eliminate a marriage, there is a fierce contrast in structure, method, frequency and result between the two. The first aspect and most glaring difference between divorce and annulments are the aftereffects imposed. An annulment legally erases a marriage like it never existed. The marriage was never void under an annulment, it never happened, and was never performed. A divorce on the other hand recognizes that a marriage did exist and that it was indeed legally recognized. 
Under an annulment the two parties who engaged in marriage have always been single, in a divorce, they were once married and subsequently considered ex’s. Commonly misunderstood, the transfer of assets, property, and debts are similar between annulment and divorce. Like divorce, the couple will go to court and state their respective cases on how they feel the assets should be distributed. 
Children are always an emotional issue when one marries and receives an annulment or divorce. Like assets, the battle over children in a divorce is extremely volatile and messy. Time is usually divided between both parties, but visitation, and whom the child lives with is dependent on the situation. Like divorce, there can be a battle over custody or child support under an annulled marriage. This is rare however, considering that most annulments occur within the first few months of marriage. 
Divorce and annulments also differ in their administration and how they are viewed. The structure of an annulment and divorce are also quite interesting to compare and contrast. In an annulment there is always a guilty side and a non-guilty side, a plaintiff and defendant so to speak. Should one person violate the contract of marriage, and the other individual exposes the wrongdoing to void the exchange of vows. With a divorce there are two types of cases-a no fault case, and a fault case. With a ‘no fault’ case both individuals consensually agree to divorce, there is no party that caused it, and it is completely mutual. In a fault case a guilt party exists and it takes on the role of an annulment case. 
Reasons for obtaining divorce and annulments are also inconsistent. Spousal abuse, although disgraceful, can exist among married couples. Because annulments are religiously influenced, there must be a violation of the marriage annulment laws to receive a declaration of nullity. Imperfectly, abuse is not grounds to annul. Fraud, religious mishandling, incest, polygamy, concealment of information, and being under age are all common violations that would permit an annulment of marriage. Adversely, divorce offers a couple much more leeway in regards to ending a marriage. Under most marriages, the option of divorce is based on the couple’s discretion and justification is not warranted. 
A great differentiation between divorce and annulments can be found when looking at the frequency of such cases and the length of the typical marriage. 90% of marriages are ended via annulments within the first year of the wedding. With marriages that last a few months or often a few weeks there are usually no children or joint properties to battle over. Divorces can occur at any time during the marriage, but the norm usually revolves around 3-8 years.
Understanding the differences and benefits of both divorce and annulments is vital. Depending on the situation, stress, finances, and time can be reduced by choosing the appropriate of the two methods. An annulment and divorce both end a marriage. However, they can offer distinct benefits and costs given your circumstances. A cost/benefit analysis between divorce and an annulment is imperative if marriage has reached some sort of breaking point.

Availability of an Annulment

Availability of an Annulment

An annulment regards a marriage as a contract, which contains responsibilities and expectations. A couple who agrees to enters into the eternal bond of marriage, also agrees to enter in to a legally-binding contract. The availability of an annulment thus depends on the stipulations in the contract. If it is breached and marriage annulment laws are violated then an annulment process can be upheld. In order to annul, just one of many elements must be present. 
Marriage annulment laws are unique when compared to grounds for a divorce. The general availability of an annulment revolves around mental, physical or legal considerations. Mental considerations question the capacity or mental state of an individual when he/she consents to marriage. One can annul if an individual was under severe mental strain during the exchange of vows. 
Marriage annulment laws also bar the inclusion of drugs and alcohol, which alter an individuals rationale. If incest is present during the ceremony a violation of marriage annulment laws is present,for example, uncle and niece, parent and child, or grandparent and grandchild than an annul is justified. If a person was forced into the marriage or threatened in some regards than a nullification will be awarded. If an individual jumped into marriage on a dare, or was the victim of fraud by their spouse, then an annul will also be upheld. Examples of fraud include misrepresentations such as, willingness to bare a child, living situation, and family history. In addition to the influence of drugs or alcohol, mental strain, and misleading-insanity is also grounds for an annulment under the marriage annulment laws. 
Marriage annulment laws contrast greatly from civil marriage laws in regards to physical impediments. Spousal abuse, although horrible, is not a violation of the marriage annulment laws. Physical impediments for an annulment revolve around the ability to procreate, and not violence. For instance, an annul can be granted if a partner displays chronic impotence throughout the marriage. If a partner fails to conceive, whether it be husband or wife, than a decree of nullity is warranted. 
Legal infractions of the marriage annulment laws are the most common grounds for successfully entering into an annulment. Since annulments are foreign to most people there a number of misconceptions attached to them. Many assume that annulments have to do with duration of the marriage. Although most take place within the first month of wedlock, the length of one’s marriage has no bearing on the availability of an annulment. If there was a violation of the marriage annulment laws an annulment can be received at any time during the union. 
A common misunderstanding in regards to the availability of an annulment revolve around the presence of children in a marriage. Under marriage annulment laws, a couple with children may receive a declaration of nullity, however, the likelihood of obtainment greatly diminish. Due to increased complications and opportunity costs, jurisdictions tend to avoid cases where a child is in the middle of an annulment.
Unlike a divorce, the availability of an annul does not depend on the spouses wishes or feelings, but instead on the marriage annulment laws. A specific set of conduct exists with annulments; a strict code that must be violated for the procedure to take place. Understanding the availability of annulment can save a couple considerable amounts of time, money, and stress.

Conflict of Laws Explained

Conflict of Laws Explained

Although Canon law is the general framework and guiding force for annulments, confusion can exist in the form of conflict of laws. Since annulment laws vary from state to state there are many instances where a couple can be overrun with an assortment of contrasting legal complications. The conflict of law question requires us to compare laws between states and jurisdictions. 
The most common example in regards to annulment laws, exists when a couple gets married in a particular state, then seeks an annulment in a different state which they reside. To better illustrate suppose John and Nancy marry in state Y. Shortly after their wedding they move to state Z, where a set of annulment laws is implicitly different. After a few weeks the couple realizes they made a ghastly error in judgment, so John sues Nancy in state Z for an annulment. The imperative question to understand is which annulment law does the case revolve around; the annulment laws in state Y or state Z?
To address this general conflict of laws issue we will assign the appropriate titles to the example. The state that held the wedding ceremony is referred to as state of contract, while state Z is known as the domiciliary state. The parties seeking the annulment will file their suit in state Z also known as the forum state. Couples who move shortly after their wedding will file their annulment in the state which they reside, but the annulment law used in invalidating the marriage will be adopted from the state in which they marry. 
For example, if John and Nancy have a valid marriage in State Y, and there annulment was granted in state Z, the marriage will still be viewed as valid. State Z must adopt the annulment law of state Y in order for a proper hearing to take place. The only way this adoption of annulment laws does not take place is if the couple manages to severely violate the public policy of their domiciliary state. If this occurs the annulment law for state Z will be adopted and the marriage will be ruled null and void. 
If a couple is aware of certain annulment laws, and is desperately seeking validating one, they often will move to a state where distinct loopholes exist. Officials are on to this practice and all states have adopted marriage-evasion statutes. In cases such as these, a judge will investigate the couples intentions. He will look at the reason for annulment then weight it against the annulment laws in the state of celebration vs. the annulment law in the domiciliary state. In order to accomplish this task, the judge has a checklist that goes over nearly every possible scenario-the questioning is extensive. If the judge suspects an evasion of laws is present then the case will be thrown out and future annulment hearings may be impossible to get.
Conflict of laws regarding annulments is a problem that most are ignorant of. If one is seeking an annulment, one must understand not only the annulment law from the state of celebration but also the state in which they reside. Having a firm grasp for both sets of laws will make the process manageable and predictable.

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