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Annulment (Voidable Marriage)

What is an annulment?

In some states, courts will grant an annulment of a marriage which declares that a marriage was never valid. In Alaska there is no court action called an annulment, but a court may declare a marriage void for any of the following causes:

But if the parties voluntarily lived together as husband and wife after

there would not be grounds to ask the court to declare the marriage void. However, if you don't want to be married anymore, you can file a complaint for divorce.

Are there forms to declare a marriage void?

There are no court forms to ask the court to declare a marriage void. You need to consult with an attorney if you want to file a case to void a marriage.

Is a void marriage different than a divorce?

Yes. If a court declares a marriage void, there is a judicial statement that there never was a marriage. This means the parties were never united in marriage as husband and wife.

If people get divorced, everyone recognizes that a valid marriage existed, but it is now over and the parties are no longer husband and wife.

Can I get an annulment through my church?

Some religions have different methods to get a church annulment so that people can remarry in the church. Church annulments are not recognized under state law. This means that a church annulment does not affect anything that is determined by civil law such as child custody, visitation rights, division of property and debt, spousal support, restoring a maiden name, etc. To deal with these issues, the marriage must be ended legally by the court in either a dissolution, divorce or a case to declare that that the marriage is void.

Rev. 26 February 2008
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