MIAMI, FL (PRWEB) February 28, 2013
Theodore Enfield, a Miami divorce lawyer, reviews the Florida annulment laws, which exist almost in a void. There is no family law code in Florida that specifically addresses them, and the courts do not assume that any individual has an undeniable right to one. This does not mean that it is impossible to have a marriage annulled in Florida, but in most cases, one should make sure to meet the requirements for an annulment.
The basic difference between a divorce and an annulment is that a divorce says the marriage is broken and an annulment says - there never was a marriage. The idea of annulling a marriage is based on the premise that the marriage was never valid. Occasionally referred to as nullified marriages, court-granted annulments are usually based on at least one of the following factors: fraud, incest, bigamy, impotence, and lack of consent, mental illness or insanity and Influence of drugs or alcohol. Courts will require evidence supporting one or more of these factors when considering an annulment request.
To obtain an Annulment in Florida is much more difficult than obtaining a dissolution of marriage, and it occurs less frequently than dissolutions. Says Mr. Enfield, a Miami Dade county attorney. However, if the annulment is required for religious reasons, contacting the rabbi, priest or minister needs to complete the process. Certain grounds must be proven to the courts to obtain an annulment. An annulment cannot be obtained based on the fact that the marriage was short, the courts require more than that. The certain grounds that can be alleged in an annulment action are: 1) That a party did not know what he/she was doing when they got married due to intoxication, mental incapacity, etc. 2) That the marriage was illegal such as in Florida you cannot marry certain members of your family 3) That there was fraud involved in the marriage that goes to the substance of the marriage.
Other factors that can invalidate a marriage are age or the relationship of the parties. Parties between the ages of 16 and 18 may only marry with the written consent of both parents or a legal guardian, unless both parents of the minor are deceased or if the minor was previously married. An invalid marriage by minors is generally voidable. Likewise, incestuous marriages are also voidable. The laws of most states prohibit marriages between brother and sister, aunt and nephew, or uncle and niece. Florida law, however, does not prohibit the marriage of a natural child to a child of the opposite sex adopted by the same parents. Both same sex marriages and a marriage between persons, one of whom is already married, are considered void in Florida.
The most common impediment to marriage is mental capacity. An essential qualification for marriage is the possession of sufficient mental capacity to agree or consent to the creation of the marital status. While the marriage of a person lacking necessary mental capacity to marry is void, the marriage may nevertheless be ratified or affirmed, after the person regains the required mental capacity, by any act or conduct that recognizes the marriage.
The rights and responsibilities of the parties whose marriage is terminated by a final judgment of dissolution of marriage may differ substantially from those of parties whose marriage is declared invalid by an annulment.
About Theodore H. Enfield - With more than 30 years of experience helping Florida families deal with family law issues such as divorce, child custody, child support, equitable property settlement and domestic violence miami, Theodore Enfield, one of the respectful divorce lawyers in Miami, has advised his clients through all issues that are likely to arise during those difficult times.