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Springfield Divorce Attorneys > Blog > Family > Annulment in Missouri

Annulment in Missouri


If you would like an end to your marriage, it’s possible to terminate the union in some cases without ever having to deal with the intricacies of divorce. An annulment declares that the marriage is void, basically declaring that the marriage was never legitimate and thereby nullifying the entire arrangement and the commitments that were made. This can occur at any time, whether the marriage occurred one day ago, one year ago, or more. Even though the marriage lacked legal status, you must have it annulled before marrying again.

Who Can Get an Annulment? 

Missouri law lays out who, exactly, may be eligible to have their marriage annulled. According to statute, marriages that were deemed illegal to begin with would fall into this category.  That means marriages between:

  • Children and their parents;
  • Grandchildren and their grandparents;
  • Whole- and half-siblings;
  • Nieces and their uncles;
  • Nephews and their aunts;
  • First cousins;
  • Individuals lacking the mental capacity to agree to marriage;
  • Individuals involved in a bigamous marriage (one person was already married when the second marriage occurred);
  • Individuals who are under the legal age to marry without parental consent and who did not receive that consent;
  • Persons who were coerced into the marriage.
  • Persons who were lied to about significant issues in order to secure the marriage—(issues like hidden medical conditions, sexual dysfunction, or sexual identity, for example, constitute fraud that might be grounds for annulment).

Benefits and Drawbacks

One huge benefit of annulment over divorce is that it is generally less complicated, and therefore less time-consuming and less expensive. The process does not involve allocating assets and debts, does not address custody or child support, and does not require a parenting-time agreement, and does not award alimony. That can be good news or bad, depending on your goals in the split.  Like divorce, annulment requires the involvement of both parties. If one partner cannot be located to receive notice of the petition, there must be a clear effort to serve notice by publication, which involves a 45-day waiting period following the publication of a notice.

Proving Grounds

 Even if both partners are in agreement that an annulment is the appropriate action, the court will need documentation proving that the marriage qualifies for it. That might include genetics testing, physician’s reports, or other documentation.

 Starting Over 

If you believe you have grounds for an annulment, the experienced Springfield family law attorneys at Courtney & Mills can answer your questions and help you moving forward.  If you are ready to terminate your marriage but an annulment is not an option, we can provide the legal assistance and support you need to achieve your goals in divorce. To discuss your questions and put together a plan, schedule a confidential consultation in our Springfield office today.



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