An annulment and a divorce are not the same thing. A divorce ends a marriage. An annulment legally decides that the marriage was never legal in the first place and did not technically exist. A legal annulment is granted by the court in Arizona, but it is not the same thing as a religious annulment which is granted by your religious institution. You can get a legal annulment but still be religiously married, and vice versa.
An annulment can only be granted in situations where the marriage was not entered into legally. It is not available if you changed your mind. A marriage can be annulled only for the following specific legal reasons:
- One of the parties was already legally married to someone else or concealed his or her previous marital status.
- The parties are closely genetically related (except when they are both over 65 and are first cousins)
- One of the parties was under age 18 at the time the marriage was entered into.
- A legal marriage license was not obtained.
- Fraud was used to induce one of the parties to marry the other.
- Duress was used to force one of the parties to enter the marriage.
- One of the parties did not have the mental capacity to enter into a marriage.
- The parties have not had sexual intercourse.
An annulment determines the marriage never existed. However, any children conceived during the marriage are legitimate children of both parties. When the court grants the annulment, child custody, child support, and property division can be determined by the court.
If you want an annulment, contact the Sampair Group in the Phoenix, Mesa, and Glendale areas. Our attorneys are available to talk to you.