Both divorces and annulments make determinations about marriage. However, there are significant differences between them. Divorce ends a valid marriage. However, an annulment states that what was believed to be married was not really a marriage. That is, it never existed according to the law. Because of this, the grounds and procedures for divorce and annulment are different.
Reasons for an Annulment in Idaho, According to a Meridian Divorce Lawyer
The courts in Idaho grant an annulment if:
- One spouse was below the age of consent when they got married and didn’t seek a parent’s consent. This only applies if the spouses don’t cohabitate after the younger spouse comes of age.
- One spouse is committing bigamy.
- One spouse was mentally ill when they entered into marriage. This only applies if the mentally incompetent spouse hasn’t convalesced. If they recover and choose to reside with the other spouse, mental incompetency can’t be grounds for annulment.
- One spouse conned the other into marriage through the use of fraud. If the spouse who was conned uncovers the deceit but continues to cohabitate, fraud is not grounds for annulment.
- One spouse only agreed to get married because the other party used force. Again, if the spouse who was forced still chooses to cohabitate, this is not grounds for an annulment.
- One spouse was not physically able to enter into a marriage. The incapacity must be constant and incurable.
How to Get an Annulment
You can seek an annulment for any of the above reasons once you can prove them. If you are considering an annulment, you should consult a Meridian divorce lawyer. They can tell you if your reasons are valid or if a divorce is a right option. One of the things your attorney will inform you about is the statute of limitations. These deadlines for filing for an annulment vary based on the grounds for the annulment. You can’t get an annulment if you file too late.
In a case where one spouse was underage, the minor must petition within four years of coming of age. However, their parent or guardian can file for annulment any time before the minor reaches the age of consent.
If bigamy is the reason for the annulment, either spouse can file at any time during the other’s life.
When mental wellness is the deciding factor, the spouse who is well must file before the other spouse dies. A relative or guardian of the sick spouse can also file any time before either spouse dies.
In cases of fraud, the cheated spouse has to file within four years of learning about the deceit.
When a spouse was forced into marriage, they must file within four years of the marriage. The same deadline applies to annulment based on physical incapacity.
The annulment process starts with filing the legal paperwork in the county where you live. The petition must explain the legal reasons for the annulment request and why the court should allow it. It is important to seek the advice of a Meridian, ID lawyer before starting the process. Child custody, child support, and financial consequences all need to be taken seriously. You also need to consider the statutes of limitations.
A Divorce Attorney in Meridian on Reasons for Divorce
A divorce achieves two major things. It severs the marital relationship and divides assets and debts. One spouse may be able to get alimony if they are unable to support themselves. If the couple has minor children, custody, support, and visitation must also be determined.
Idaho law allows both no-fault and fault-based divorce, unlike many states. In a no-fault divorce, citing irreconcilable differences is enough. This means you simply can’t get along. You don’t need to accuse your spouse of any wrongdoing. However, you can also opt to file a complaint based on fault. This may result in a more favorable outcome for you although this can’t be guaranteed.
Idaho law allows the following grounds for divorce:
- Extreme cruelty
- Willful desertion. Your spouse must have lived separately for more than a year with the intention of abandoning the union.
- Willful neglect. This is a husband’s failure to provide the basic necessities for his wife for at least a year. It must be due to laziness or refusal to work.
- Habitual intoxication for more than a year
- Felony conviction
- Permanent insanity. Your spouse must have been living in a mental institution for at least three years.
- Living apart for at least five years consecutively
How to Get A Divorce
To file for divorce in Idaho, one spouse must be a state resident for six weeks prior to filing. The divorce should be filed in the county where the defendant resides. If the defendant is not a resident, the case should be filed in the country where the plaintiff lives.
Divorce cases filed in Idaho must declare the grounds on which the application is made. This must be supported with evidence or testimony. A Meridian, ID attorney can guide you in ensuring you understand the grounds and legal repercussions.
Contact a Meridian Divorce Attorney Today
If you want to end your marriage, call Idaho Divorce Center for a consultation. The skilled, experienced attorneys in Meridian, ID will listen to your situation carefully. They will then advise you as to whether an annulment or divorce is more appropriate. Don’t make any decisions without seeking our professional advice. We are ready to assist you so don’t delay in calling us.