How To Get A Nullity Of Marriage In California

How To Get A Nullity Of Marriage In California

Hi, Tim Blankenship here with, today we’re talking about the rules for a nullity for marriage in California, so we’re talking about annulments.

Every once in a while, you know we do thousands of divorce cases a year and every once in a while, we’ll get a call for someone asking, saying they want to get a nullity and in most cases they’re asking for a nullity because they have been married for a short period of time, maybe a couple of weeks, a couple of months or something like and that and realized it was a mistake.

Now if you watch the TV, and you watch programs on TV, one I can think of particularly, oh gosh I’m trying to remember the name of it but basically they were in Vegas, they got married and the next day they said oh we want to get a nullity, do you do a nullities, oh the movie was the Hangover and maybe in Vegas this is true, where you can just go and have your divorced nullified because it was a mistake and short term marriage but in California that’s not the case.

Time does not matter or I should say shortness of time, or the shortness of the marriage is not considered an issue or reason for a nullity. So, the reason I’m bringing this up is on top of getting a few calls a year for a nullity, I got a call this week and the gal said look we got married 4 days ago and we want to have our marriage nullified, we decided that it was a mistake and the wrong thing to do and again, I had to explain her that the time lapse is not a reason for a nullity in the state of California.

Here are the reasons, there are 6 specific reasons you can ask the marriage to be voided and they usually aren’t going to be applicable.

Number 1 is petitioner’s age at time of registration of domestic partnership or marriage, so this means the party filing for the annulment was then say under 18 at the time of the marriage or domestic partnership, so basically unable to enter into a legal contract essentially.

Prior existing marriage, okay this is the only one we’ve actually ever had nullities approved on and what this is, is if you get married newly and you never finalize your divorce on your 1st marriage, you can have this new marriage voided and nullified because there is a preexisting marriage, that’s the one that we’ve used the most, or I should say the only one we’ve used.

The next one, unsound mind, so it’s either party was of unsound mind or unable to understand the nature of the marriage or domestic partnership including the obligations that come with it, so this is going to be possibly the Vegas, you go to Vegas, got drunk and woke up and married the next day, you could say you’re of unsound mind but that’s going to be difficult to prove and, by the way all of these reasons have to be approved by a court, none of these are like divorce, where it’s uncontested or irreconcilable differences, you have to actually go to a hearing and prove to the court that this is valid and the judge has to make the order on it, and many times what the court will do is they will dismiss the nullity and they’ll just make it a divorce.

Okay number 4 fraud, it says either party got married or registered the domestic partnership as a result of fraud, the fraud must have been about something vital to the relationship it directly affected, why the party who was deceived agreed to the marriage or domestic partnership and some of the examples it says are marrying only to get a green card and the ability to have children.

Number 5, force, either party consented to getting married or filing into this partnership as a result of force okay.

And the 6th one is physical incapacity and what they’re referring to it says, the parties got married or registered a domestic partnership while one of them was physically incapacitated and in parenthesis is say basically it means that one of the spouses or partners was physically incapable of consummating the relationship, so this goes back to the old world of if you can’t get your spouse pregnant that the marriage is invalid, it’s very old school but still very on the books apparently.

So that’s the 6 reasons and again time is not a factor when asking for a nullity in California, you simply would have to get divorced. So for the gal that called me the other day I had to break the news that despite being married only 4 days and being very young, that they’re going to have to get divorced as opposed to nullifying the marriage, just have to chalk it up to a life lesson unfortunately.

Tim Blankenship specializing in California divorce, we can help you anywhere in California, feel free to give us a call 661 281 0266 and we’ll talk to you soon.