Few references to annulment exist in Florida law and no statute specifically addresses annulment in detail, making it a complex legal issue. As a result, legal annulments are much rarer than divorces in Florida and only certain grounds for annulment are valid.
It is also important to distinguish between legal annulment, which can be only granted by a state court, and religious annulment, which can only be granted by a church entity. But a religious annulment does not affect a marriage, legally, in the view of the state.
Legal annulment also differs from divorce in that an annulment invalidates a marriage as if it never happened, while a divorce acknowledges the existence of the marriage as it is dissolved by the court while providing a legal mechanism for division of property, alimony, child custody (time sharing), child support, and other related issues.
The family lawyers at Yaffa & Associates are have extensive experience in all aspects of family law including annulments.
Yaffa & Associates proudly represents clients in Boca Raton and surrounding areas of Palm Beach County.
Contact Yaffa & Associates at (561) 276-3880 to have one of our attorneys explain annulment in Florida and discuss your concerns about annulment.
Annulment is much rarer than divorce in Florida in part because the grounds for annulment in Florida are stringent. Courts have established that someone may seek a marriage annulment if:
Because statutes do not directly address annulment, over the years the outcomes of annulment cases in Florida courts (precedent) have provided direction for judges today. In some annulment cases, judges have awarded temporary alimony or ordered other financial payments.
Religious annulment is not recognized by Florida courts. A religious annulment does not change the fact that the state still considers the marriage intact, however many people seek a religious annulment for spiritual reasons while they are also seeking a legal annulment or divorce through the court.
The religious terms for annulment vary. In the Catholic Church, a Tribunal may issue a “Decree of Nullity” under certain criteria. In Judaism, a husband must present a “get” to the wife to initiate a Jewish annulment proceeding.
Florida Department of Health — The form you need to complete and file with the county clerk to initiate an annulment (or divorce) proceeding can be found here.
Diocese of Palm Beach — The official web site of the Diocese of Palm Beach discusses marriage within the Catholic Church and provides questions and answers about a declaration of nullity from a church Tribunal.
An annulment case may involve a number of complex legal issues, so if you are considering an annulment, you should consult with an experienced family law attorney immediately.
The family law attorneys at Yaffa & Associates have many years of experience in annulment cases. We represent men and women throughout Boca Raton and Palm Beach County, Florida, including West Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Wellington, and Jupiter, as well as Broward and Dade counties and surrounding areas.