Kentucky provides you with two options when a resident wants to end his marriage: divorce or an annulment. Although divorce permits you to permanently end your marriage, it doesn’t erase the fact that it occurred. To end the marriage, you and your spouse usually have to work out child custody, spousal support and child support agreements. An annulment is a declaration by a divorce court that a valid, or legal, marriage never existed. Obtaining an annulment in Kentucky requires following similar steps as seeking a divorce. The state, however, only permits the annulment of a marriage for specific reasons.
Understand the difference between a legal annulment and religious annulment. Only Kentucky can provide you with an annulment to invalidate your marriage. A religious annulment is one given through your priest, rabbi or minister so you can remarry within your faith.
Decide the reason for the annulment. Kentucky requires you provide a reason such as fraud, force, kinship, age and mental capacity before the court invalidates the marriage.
Write an annulment petition. The petition includes your name, spouse’s name and reason for the annulment. You can use a blank form you purchase online, in a legal book or in an office supply store.
File a Petition for Annulment with the local court in your jurisdiction.
Annulments typically take place after you’ve been married a short time such as 3 weeks or months. Therefore, you and your spouse won’t have to settle disputes such as assets, debts and property.
Any children born into the marriage aren’t considered illegitimate just because parents annulled the marriage.
Kentucky law only gives you 90 days to file the petition from the time you discovered the grounds for annulment. For instance, if you found out your husband was underage in April, you have 90 days from that day to file.
If you’re considering asking for any spousal support, also called maintenance or alimony, you don’t want to annul the marriage. Since the marriage never existed once it’s annulled, your spouse won’t have to pay you spousal support. Instead you want to seek a divorce.
Fraud is the most frequently cited reason for filing a Petition for Annulment, according to the Law Offices of William L. Hoge, III. Fraud consists of the spouse not disclosing critical information to you like criminal record, an existing marriage, lying or concealing a drug addiction.
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