The end of a marriage is a difficult process. For some couples, the thought of a divorce is disheartening and overwhelming, but in some situations, it may be possible to avoid a divorce and seek an annulment. There are strict qualifications for annulment, but you may find it beneficial to learn more about how you may qualify.
Annulments are only an option for Ohio couples who are still in their first two years of marriage. People often seek an annulment rather than a divorce if they believe that their marriage was not valid, legally binding or real. Both annulments and divorces will end a marriage, but there are distinct differences between the two processes.
Why would I want an annulment?
One of the main ways that an annulment differs from a divorce is in the way that it treats the marriage. In a divorce, a couple acknowledges that they were previously married. However, in an annulment, it makes it as if the marriage never existed. You may wish to explore this option if the following apply to your situation:
- Fraud: If the basis of your relationship was a lie or fraud, you would be eligible for an annulment.
- Misunderstanding: Sometimes, a serious misunderstanding could be grounds for a couple to get an annulment. In many cases, the source of the misunderstanding is the desire to have or not to have children in the future.
- Concealment: If you learn that your spouse hid something that ultimately changes the nature of your relationship, you could be eligible for an annulment.
- Lack of consent: If either party coerced, forced or manipulated the other into entering the marriage, this could be grounds for an annulment rather than a divorce.
- Impotency or incest: These two issues could be valid grounds to move forward with an annulment instead of a traditional divorce.
Before you move forward or make any important decisions, you would be wise to seek a complete explanation of the options available to you.
Protecting your interests during an annulment
Whether you have religious reasons or other reasons for seeking an annulment, you would be wise to move to protect your interests as early as possible in the process. From property division to other complex issues, you may benefit from having an experienced ally to advocate for your needs and your rights.
Like divorce, annulment is not always an easy process, but it could be the right option by which you can pursue a better future.