How to Get Your Marriage Annulled in Michigan

In order for a marriage to be legal in Michigan, both the couple and the marriage itself must meet certain conditions. If those conditions are not met, the marriage does not legally exist. When a legal marriage ends, a couple is divorced. When a marriage that is not legal in the eyes of the state ends, it can be considered annulled. Annulment applies in a very limited set of circumstances. If you believe your marriage never could have legally taken place, speak to an attorney about the possibility of annulment.

Do I qualify for an annulment?

In Michigan there are specific conditions under which a couple or individual can seek to annul their marriage:

  • Consanguinity -- when the spouses are close relatives
  • Bigamy -- when one spouse is already married to someone else
  • Underage -- when one spouse is under Michigan's legal age limit of 16
  • Force or fraud -- when one partner withholds or falsifies information -- such as the inability to have children -- or forces the other to marry

In the event that the couple has had children, custody is either divided by agreement or a court order, or given to the spouse who is innocent of any fraudulent wrongdoing. Children of a marriage that is annulled are considered legitimate children of their parents.

How annulment differs from divorce

While the result of an annulment is very similar to that of divorce --it effectively ends a marriage -- there are some differences. Following an annulment:

  • There can be temporary spousal support, but there is no possibility of permanent alimony
  • If one parent is underage or incapable, children are legally children of the capable parent and not of both parents
  • It is as if the marriage never existed and both partners are free to marry other people immediately

Legal annulment should not be confused with religious annulment, which can only be granted through a religious institution. If you have questions about your qualification for annulment, speak with a family law attorney at the Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins.