Divorce means the end of a valid marriage, establishing that a marriage at one point existed. An annulment means that the marriage wasn’t valid in the first place. Therefore, the marriage never existed on record. A divorce still acknowledges a marriage legally took place at one point. Many people seek an annulment because they want to pretend their marriage never happened, but this isn’t enough reason to obtain an annulment. The legal definition of an annulment means there was no valid marriage in the first place because the marriage was invalid from the beginning.
If you are eligible for annulment, you must file a “Petition for Annulment” in the district court for the county where either you or your spouse currently reside. Once the petition is complete, you will have a hearing before a judge to determine whether your marriage should be annulled.
The following are the grounds for annulment in Iowa:
In Iowa, some of these annulment grounds are associated with certain conditions. If an individual was involved in a previous marriage when the parties were married and that person’s previous spouse passed away, and the current spouses share the same household after death, then annulment is not an option. In regards to a spouse who was under 18 at the time of the marriage and lied about it to their spouse, unless the underage spouse seeks annulment and proves their real age prior to their 18th birthday, then the marriage won’t be annulled.
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While divorce is the most common way to end a marriage, the other option is to go through an annulment. If you meet the requirements for an annulment, then it is imperative to seek legal assistance from a qualified lawyer.
At The Law Offices of Mark R. Hinshaw, we have an expansive knowledge of Iowa family laws and can help you devise an aggressive and personalized strategy, in order to obtain the results you want.
Our Des Moines family law attorneys understand what you’re facing. In order to make the annulment process as smooth as possible, enlist our legal assistance so you can immediately begin the next chapter of your life.