At Stepp & Sullivan, our annulment attorneys in Houston understand that sometimes a marriage simply is not valid, and when that is true, the spouses who are engaged in the union have the right to void its existence.
Unfortunately, for many reasons, including fraud or force, marriages happen throughout the State of Texas that should not have occurred.
When they do, our Harris County annulment lawyers partner with the individual who is seeking an annulment to clear their marriage from their record, as if it never existed.
If you are seeking to void your marriage through an annulment in Texas, there are many things you must know first, including what an annulment entails, and the legal grounds for pursuing the action.
Let’s get started.
What is an Annulment in Houston, TX?
An annulment is very different from a divorce in Texas, although it may entail a lot of the same details.
An annulment ends an invalid marriage. One that was not legally binding, for one of many reasons.
If your marriage was invalid from the beginning, you may be eligible for an annulment in the state of Texas.
What are the Grounds For an Annulment in Houston, TXs?
To pursue an annulment in Texas, you must prove that the marriage occurred under one of the following scenarios that deem it a voidable commitment.
Annulling a marriage for bigamy requires that either spouse is already married and were not legally divorced before this marriage occurred.
However, if one spouse is already married, the marriage can remain valid if the earlier marriage is dissolved and the spouses of the later marriage continue to live together.
This scenario means the marriage cannot be annulled later. If the couple from the second marriage would like to dissolve their marriage thereafter, they must seek a divorce.
- Duress or Force
One spouse may have grounds for an annulment in Texas if he or she was married under duress, either by force, threat, or intimidation.
If one spouse hid facts that would have been essential to the other agreeing to the marriage, they may have grounds for an annulment in Texas.
In either case, however, if the spouses continued to live together after the fraud, duress, or force was no longer present, a Texas court will not grant an annulment.
Fraud must be proven in a major way — one essential to the marriage’s success — before it will satisfy the grounds for an annulment. That may include someone withholding information about their previous marriages or someone lying about their identity, among other possible facts.
If one spouse cannot have sexual intercourse with the other spouse — permanently — an annulment may be granted.
If the other spouse was aware of this condition prior to the marriage, it is no longer a valid reason for an annulment. The same is true if the spouse voluntarily lived with the other spouse after learning of the dysfunction.
Annulment because of incest requires that both spouses are related, with their lineage closer than first cousins.
If one spouse could not consent to the marriage because of their intoxication, he or she may have grounds for an annulment — unless the spouses lived together after they were sober.
Individuals must be 18 years old to legally enter marriage in Texas.
However, with a court order or a parent’s consent, the legal age drops to 16.
When one spouse is under the legal age to get married, he or she can have their parent or guardian file an annulment on their behalf.
Our annulment lawyers in Houston, Texas understand that any of these reasons can involve an emotional pursuit to void the marriage, which is why we work hard to file the necessary paperwork on your behalf to put this marriage behind you, so you can move forward with your life as if it never legally occurred.
Our annulment attorneys in Houston understand that while the marriage may be void, the lasting emotional and physical effects of its occurrence are not easily removed from the equation. We will help you traverse this legal process, so you can focus on your new life, instead of the one we are putting behind you.
Our Family Law Firm in Houston at Stepp & Sullivan, P.C. Also Provide Following Services:
- Child Support
- Child Custody & Visitation
- Protective & Restraining Orders
- Spousal Support
- Division of Community Property
- Grandparents Rights
- Divorce Modification
- Property Division
- Legal Separation
How Can I Pursue an Annulment in Houston, Texas?
Annulments can be pursued by either spouse by filing the paperwork on their own with their family court, or by partnering with an experienced annulment attorney in Houston, who will handle each of the details fully without delay.
The lawsuit’s paperwork must include:
- Full names of both spouses and any shared children
- List the date of your marriage and the date you and your spouse stopped living together
- Which spouse has lived in the county for at least 90 days, and confirm one spouse has lived in Texas for at least six months before filing
- State what property you and your spouse have and if you need to the court to divide it, and address any spousal support requirements
Texas has a very different annulment process than most states, which allows spouses who are seeking an annulment to insist on a jury trial.
If one spouse wants a jury trial, the hearing with occur in front of either a judge or a jury of 12 residents from your county.
During the hearing, one spouse must prove the legal grounds for an annulment to the judge or jury. After this, they will either grant the marriage void or deny the annulment.
At Stepp & Sullivan, our Houston annulment attorneys will handle your complete case, which includes filing the necessary paperwork to comprise any client demands, which could include property or other requirements be built into the lawsuit.
We will also ensure the annulment papers are delivered directly to the other spouse, whether he or she lives in another county, state, or cannot be immediately found, so you can begin planning your life after the annulment.
What are the Effects of an Annulment in Houston, TX?
When you are approved by the court for an annulment in Texas, your marriage is declared null and void. It is as if you were never legally married, which is something you can profess going forward.
What Happens to Our Children’s Rights After a Texas Annulment?
Children who are born from annulled marriages have the same rights as children who were born in valid marriages.
They have the right to be financially supported by both parents and have the right to inherit from either of them.
How Can the Houston Annulment Attorneys at Stepp & Sullivan Help Me Void My Marriage?
The process of seeking an annulment in Texas is like seeking a divorce, but the results are very different. When a marriage is annulled, there is a legal declaration that the marriage was never valid in the first place, which provides some freedom for the spouse who sought the annulment.
We are available to discuss your case and walk you through the annulment process, so you know what to expect from a legal perspective, which will allow you to begin planning your future with confidence.
If you believe your marriage meets the grounds for an annulment in Texas, contact our family law attorneys in Houston at Stepp & Sullivan, P.C. today to discuss your case by calling (713) 336-7200 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.