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Divorce vs. annulment: Which one to choose

Annulments are not the same as divorces. In some ways, they act as divorces do, but they are defined differently. An annulment makes it appear that two people were never married to begin with, while a divorce is simply dissolving the marriage. Why would you want to choose this method for ending your marriage, and is it something you are entitled to do? Your attorney can help you find out if your marriage can be annulled, but here are a few examples of when one may be.

Annulments can be approved in a few cases. For instance, if there was misrepresentation of fraud before the marriage, then that could be a reason to seek an annulment. Here's an example: The husband of the couple claimed he was fertile, knowing that his wife wanted to have children. Later, she finds out that he knew he could not have children. That would be fraud, and it could be a reason for an annulment.

The refusal to consummate the marriage is another reason for an annulment. If one or both spouses refuse to have sexual intercourse with the other, then an annulment is possible.

An annulment may also be accepted on the grounds of a major miscommunication. For instance, if you really want to have children, but your spouse does not ever want to have children, then this could be an issue. If you didn't realize that your spouse didn't want to have kids, an annulment may be the answer to getting out of the marriage.

Source: FindLaw, "FAQ Regarding Separation and Annulment Law," accessed June 29, 2016

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