Annulment in Texas
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At the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, our compassionate Houston lawyers have represented hundreds of clients in divorce and family law issues. If you are seeking an annulment, our attorneys will analyze your situation, determine your eligibility, and walk you through the legal process.
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Understanding the Difference Between Divorce & Annulment
While a divorce legally ends a valid marriage, an annulment declares that the marriage was never valid. It essentially voids the marriage and treats it like it never existed. In a divorce, issues such as the division of assets and property, child support, and other financial aspects are decided by the court. However, in an annulment, you must file a separate petition to deal with these issues.
Eligibility for an Annulment
Annulment is not available for everyone. It is granted for marriages that are considered void or voidable. Void marriages are those that are deemed illegal in the first place. They include marriage between close family members, marriage to a spouse who is already married to a third party, marriage to a spouse under the age of 14 (or 18 without a court order or parental consent), marriage within 30 days of a spouse’s previous divorce, and marriage within 72 hours of taking out the marriage license.
Under Texas law, marriage between close relatives is illegal. These relationships involve:
- Brother and sister (by half blood, whole blood, or adoption)
- Aunt and nephew
- Uncle and niece
- Ancestor and descendant
Voidable marriages are those that are considered legal, but are entered into under conditions that the spouse would not have reasonably agreed to. Examples include marriage under intoxication, deception, or compulsion. Furthermore, if one spouse lacked the mental capacity to agree to the marriage, or was permanently impotent at the time of the marriage, this is also grounds for an annulment.
The Process of Obtaining an Annulment in Texas
According to Texas statutes, at least one spouse must live in the state, or the spouses must have been married in the state, in order to pursue an annulment. In general, an annulment lawsuit may be filed in the county where either spouse lived when the marriage took place. If children were born or adopted into the marriage, you will need to file a Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship (SAPCR) in addition to the Original Petition to Annul Marriage form. The court will then determine child visitation, custody, and support.
Knowledgeable Family Law Attorneys in Houston, Texas
The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC gives personalized attention to each client. We know you are going through a stressful time. If you want to understand your options regarding annulment, our Houston lawyers will answer your questions and help you file the necessary documents. We have years of experience, and will work hard to protect your interests throughout the process.
Contact us today to discuss your situation with a member of our team.