History, Grounds, Consequences
A judgment by a court that retroactively invalidates a marriage to the date of its formation.
An annulment differs from a DIVORCE, a court order that terminates a marriage, since it is a judicial statement that there was never a marriage. A divorce, which can only take place where there has been a valid marriage, means that the two parties are no longer HUSBAND AND WIFE once the decree is issued. An annulment means that the individuals were never united in marriage as husband and wife.
Various religions have different methods for obtaining a church divorce, or annulment, but these procedures have no legal force or effect upon a marriage that complied with the requirements of law. Such a marriage must be legally annulled.
Escalera, Steve. 2000. "California Marital Annulments." The Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues 11 (spring): 153–8.
Nelson, William T. 2000. A Treatise on the Law of Divorce and Annulment of Marriage: Including the Adjustment of Property Rights upon Divorce, the Procedure in Suits for Divorce, and the Validity and Extraterritorial Effect of Decrees of Divorce. Holmes Beach, Fla.: Gaunt.
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