Over the last few decades, the number of divorces has increased nationally and statewide. However, some individuals may be interested in not simply divorcing their spouse, but instead having their marriage declared legally invalid. This process, known as an annulment, requests that the family court declare that the marriage is void and legally never existed. By having a marriage end via annulment instead of divorce, this may change the division of property and other related areas. In today's post, we'll look at some of the most common grounds for marriage annulment in Texas.
Minors aged 16 or 17 may choose to enter into marriage, but only with parental consent or approval through a court order. Minors that marry without parental consent or court approval can have their marriage annulled, as long as a parent or guardian files a petition for annulment before the minor's 18th birthday.
Fraud, Duress or Force
Unfortunately, some individuals are pressured, coerced, or forced to marry against their will, and desire to have their marriage annulled. These forced marriages may be due to cultural pressures, familial pressures, or threats of domestic violence. In addition, some people may be victims of marital fraud if their spouse intentionally lied or hid crucial information prior to the marriage, such as failing to disclose all previous marriages.
Influence of Alcohol or Narcotics
People under the influence of alcohol or narcotics may find their capacity to give consent to a marriage severely impaired. They may have the "sobering" realization that their new marriage was a mistake, and can file a petition for annulment.
For individuals interested in having their marriage annulled, Texas courts must see that the petitioner did not continue to live with their spouse after becoming sober, or after the they are no longer being forced or coerced to stay in the marriage. Successfully petitioning for the annulment of a marriage requires prompt legal action and experienced family law attorneys. Christiansen Law Firm is a Texas-based family law firm with extensive experience helping clients navigate the complex area of family law. Christiansen Law Firm assists clients in need of annulment, divorce, adoption, child custody, and protective order legal services. Contact Christiansen Law Firm at their Houston or San Antonio offices for more information, or to schedule a free consultation.