West Palm Beach Annulment Attorney
Need an annulment attorney? Experience matters.
Annulments in Florida
Legal annulments differ from religious annulments, such as those performed by a priest. A legal annulment essentially voids a marriage. It is extremely difficult to get an annulment granted in Florida.
There are two distinctive types of annulment. If, for some reason, a marriage was never valid to begin with, considering itself void in the eyes of the law, granting an annulment is easy. If the marriage was legally valid from the start, it might be voidable, and annulling it is considerably more difficult.
You must meet specific guidelines to have your marriage annulled: the relationship must have been bigamous or incestuous, involve an underage spouse, or fraudulent.
Annulment proceedings can be difficult, and having an experienced family lawyer on your side is necessary. Winig Law is qualified to help with your annulment process from start to finish.
What is Civil Annulment?
“Civil annulments” differ from the commonly misunderstood “religious annulments,” which can only be granted by a church or clergy member. Parties who obtain a religious annulment are still considered legally married in the State of Florida.
A civil annulment is a court order which declares a marriage invalid. Legally, an annulled marriage is one that never existed.
Grounds for Annulment in Florida
Unlike divorce matters, there are no Florida Statutes that govern annulments. However, Florida appellate courts have distinguished a number of grounds for a marriage to be annulled. Those grounds are based heavily upon whether the marriage in question is “void” or “voidable.”
Void vs. Voidable Marriages:
A void marriage is a marriage that was invalid from its inception, whereas a voidable marriage is a marriage that was not necessarily invalid from the beginning.
Examples of Grounds for Annulment in Void Marriages:
- Both spouses are underage
- One spouse is permanently mentally incapacitated and unable to consent to marriage.
Examples of Grounds for Annulment in Voidable Marriages:
- One of the spouses lacked the mental capacity to consent to the marriage at the time of the ceremony as a result of a temporary, but serious, mental issue or due to the spouse’s inebriation from alcohol or drugs;
- One spouse used fraudulent acts or misrepresentations to deceive the other into entering the marriage;
- One of the spouses was under duress;
- One of the spouses was a minor and did not have the consent of his or her parent or guardian;
- The impotence of one of the spouses without the other’s knowledge; or
- One or both of the spouses entered into the marriage as a joke.
Annulment proceedings can be complicated, and having an experienced family law attorney on your side is necessary. Contact Winig Law today to schedule a consultation with a qualified family law attorney who will help you navigate this complex matter.
An Annulment Attorney You Can Trust
Stephen L. Winig, Esq. has been a family attorney in West Palm Beach and surrounding areas for forty years. He takes pride in the fact that Winig Law is, in every sense of the phrase, a “family practice.” Everyone walking through our door is afforded the same respect, fairness, and consideration as a trusted relative.
We know how delicate and deeply personal Family Law and Divorce issues are to our clients. We are honored you chose to turn to us.