A couple can seek a marriage annulment if they believe it wasn’t valid to begin with. Unlike a divorce, when an annulment is granted, the record is entirely erased from the legal system. For this reason, a couple needs to prove the invalidity of the marriage.
In Iowa, your marriage can only be annulled if:
- it was incestuous – you and your spouse are related by blood (first cousins or closer);
- one or both parties was impotent;
- it resulted in bigamy – you or your spouse was already married to someone else at the time of marriage;
- there is evidence of incompetence – you or your spouse was legally incompetent and under the guardianship of another person at the time of marriage; or
- one or both parties is a minor.
However, there are some exceptions to these rules. For example, if one spouse was married to another person when they got married and the other person dies, the marriage will not be annulled. Additionally, if the spouses live together after the previous marriage dissolves, the current marriage will not be annulled.
How to Obtain an Annulment
In Iowa, you must file a petition for annulment in order to get your annulment granted. Your petition should be filed in a county court where you and/or your spouse reside. At least one party must have lived in Iowa for at least 1 year before filing can begin.
The petition should state:
- which party has lived in Iowa for at least 1 year;
- each spouses name, birth date, and address;
- the date of marriage;
- name and birth date of any children from the marriage;
- legal grounds for the annulment; and
- whether the filing spouse needs temporary support.
After the petition is filed, you will go before a judge and explain the reasoning behind the marriage annulment. If a judge believes the need for annulment has been proven, they will sign an order to grant it.
Experienced Annulment Attorneys
At The Law Offices of Mark R. Hinshaw, PLC we are dedicated to providing our clients with competent legal representation. If you are seeking an annulment, we will work with you throughout the entire process to ensure your needs are met.
Call our firm today at (515) 200-7571 or contact us online for your consultation.