An annulment differs from a divorce due to the fact that when a couple has their marriage annulled it is as if the marriage never happened.
Unlike divorce, there are different causes or grounds for an annulment.
Some faiths look down on divorce and feel it is preferable to have the marriage annulled.
An annulment is recognized by both a court of law and certain religious authorities. The Catholic Church, in particular, will offer a religious marriage annulment after a marriage has been annulled in court.
The grounds for annulment are varied but typically, they are based upon some sort of fraud or failure to disclose certain information to the spouse.
For instance, if a couple is married and then they discover that their spouse has been previously married, the marriage could be annulled. By law, the marriage should have never taken place; therefore the annulment essentially wipes the marriage record clean.
Another cause for anullment could be if two people were married and one person lied to the other or withheld important information that has lifelong consequences, such as chronic illness, a drug addiction information or a criminal record.
Many people assume that annulments are only granted after a short period of marriage, however there are situations where an annulment may be granted after years of marriage.
If you are considering an annulment, it is imperative that you retain the services of a family law attorney.