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Geneva family law attorney for annulmentThere are millions of married couples in Illinois and throughout the United States. However, not all marriages last. Approximately 40 to 50 percent of all U.S. marriages end in divorce. Many people may equate a divorce with an annulment or even a legal separation, but they are not the same thing. In a divorce, a couple will seek to dissolve a valid marriage. In an annulment, the marriage is ruled as invalid, as if it never happened. Some people assume that an annulment is easier to obtain than a divorce, but that is not always true. Annulments can have stricter requirements and time limits when compared to a divorce. If you are considering ending your marriage, it is essential that you hire professional legal counsel to fully understand your legal options.    

Declaration of Invalidity 

It is important to note that an annulment is not the same thing as a divorce or legal separation. When married couples legally separate, they live apart but are still technically married in the eyes of the law. An annulment is a way for two people who are in a fraudulent or invalid marriage to legally leave the marriage by essentially voiding it. A marriage can be deemed invalid for various reasons, including if one party was unable to consent to the union due to:

  • Mental illness
  • Substance abuse
  • Coercion
  • Incest
  • Bigamy
  • Inability to consummate the marriage
  • Being underage at the time of the wedding

A marriage can only be annulled if the court issues a Declaration of Invalidity. An invalid marriage represents an illegal relationship and is therefore not recognized by the state. 

annulments, Geneva family law attorney, Illinois annulment, clean marital slate, illegal marriage, consummation, petition for annulmentOne of the most effective marketing slogans to ever hit the jackpot recently celebrated more than a decade of enticing vacationers and love struck couples to Sin City. Illinois couples, however, do not need to travel to the desert to tie the knot nor petition for an annulment. Couples can opt to petition for an annulment as stipulated under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (750 ILCS 5). However, under the terms of the Illinois Declaration of Invalidity of Marriage, certain criteria must first be met in order to qualify.

Differing than filing for a divorce, an annulment provides the option to petition the court and request approval to wipe the marital slate clean, thus declaring a marriage as null and void. Annulments can be tricky, however, and contacting a qualified Illinois family law attorney knowledgeable of annulment law in Illinois is essential. However, before your scheduled consultation, these key elements could provide valuable insight to the process.

Critique the Criteria

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