Contact Our Firm for a Consultation

TV appearances

news article

Suffolk County Annulment Lawyers

In order to determine whether a substantive defect may result in the annulment of a marriage, it is necessary to consult the causes of annulment provided for by the law in the State of New York. For more information on annulling a marriage, you can also consult a lawyer. Therefore, here are the procedures and conditions for requesting the annulment of a marriage.

A few examples of relevant occasions for an annulment: the marriage was not been celebrated by a civil registrar or by a competent civil registrar; the marriage was celebrated by a minor (unless they have obtained a dispensation granted by the parents); bigamous marriage; incestuous marriage, where there is an impediment to a marriage because of a family relationship (eg marriage between brother and sister, between the aunt and her nephew, etc.); and marriage whose consent has been vitiated (for example, with a sham marriage aimed only at obtaining a right of residence or with a forced marriage). Remember, whatever the cause of the annulment of a marriage, the effects are identical.

For example, a sham marriage is sometimes a marriage that has been celebrated while the intention of at least one spouse was not to found a community of family life but was rather only to obtain a right of residence. The persons concerned with a sham marriage aimed only at obtaining a right of residence may also be sentenced to prison terms or fines. These mistakes about essential qualities happen more often than we think: it can be, for example, the discovery, after the marriage, that a spouse is already married or that a spouse has hidden their nationality.

The law applicable to marriage will determine who is entitled to apply for an annulment of a marriage. Remember, minors can marry subject to the permission of their parents and a marriage contracted between spouses of minors without prior authorization from the parents can no longer be contested after the minor spouse(s) has reached the age of 18 years. The nullity of the marriage can also be pronounced in a case of a lack of consent of one of the spouses, and the consent must be given freely and knowingly.

An annulment is therefore pronounced when one realizes, once the marriage is celebrated, that the conditions of validity of the union were not met at the time of its celebration. Also, with the existence of a putative marriage (the maintenance of certain effects of a marriage despite the annulment of the marriage) the effects of such a putative marriage also fall under the law that annulled the marriage. Remember, the consequences of the annulment of marriage are determined by the law under which the marriage was annulled.

In US law (applicable if the marriage was celebrated in the US), a marriage is also liable to annulment if a marriage was celebrated despite impediments related to kinship or a marriage which has not been celebrated according to the forms required. Therefore, an attorney must demand the nullity of the marriage during the life of the spouses when acting on the basis of a substantive defect. In the presence of a formal defect, it is the law of the jurisdiction of the domicile of the spouses which will determine if this defect causes the annulment of the marriage.

If it is a formal defect, it is also the law of the jurisdiction of the domicile of the spouses which will determine which persons will be able to contest the marriage. For example, when there is a fraudulent act of one of the spouses, usually only the spouse who has been misled can request the annulment of the marriage.