© William D. Slicker, 2012
An annulment of a marriage differs from a dissolution of a marriage. A dissolution of marriage seeks to terminate or end a valid marriage. Whereas an annulment seeks for the court to decide there was never a valid marriage due to some disability or defect. A dissolution of marriage terminates marriage as of the date of the judgment. Whereas an annulment renders the marriage void as of the time it was supposedly entered into.
There are a limited number of grounds that have been found sufficient to support an annulment of a marriage. These circumstances including the following:
(1) If a person getting married is still a party to another marriage at the time that they enter into a subsequent marriage, then that subsequent marriage may be annulled as a void, bigamous marriage.
(2) Florida prohibits a marriage between people who are closely related. For example, marriage between a brother and sister may be annulled as an incestuous marriage.
(3) A marriage between someone who is under the age of consent may be annulled.
(4) The marriage of a person who is mentally incapacitated may be annulled since the person with the incapacity did not have the mental capacity to knowingly consent.
(5) A marriage that was entered into with no intent of cohabitation or consummation may be annulled. For example, a U.S. citizen who marries a non-citizen for the sole purpose of assisting the non-resident to obtain entry into the United States with no intent of living together may be annulled if there was no cohabitation or consummation.
(6) A marriage that was entered into under threats or force may be annulled.
Thus when someone enters into the stereotypical “shotgun wedding,” that person may have the marriage annulled.
(7) Under some situations a marriage may be annulled based on fraud. For example, if a party marries someone on some false basis with no intent of consummating the marriage or cohabitating, the marriage might be annulled.
If you think you might be qualified for an annulment or a dissolution of marriage, please contact William D. Slicker, P. A. at (727) 322-2795.