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Difference Between an Annulment and A Divorce

There is a difference between annulment and divorce. Divorce is the legal separation of a couple, while an annulment is declared void or voidable.

Annulments can be granted if the marriage was void or voidable at the time it was entered into. 

On the other hand, divorces are only granted in cases where there has been no valid marriage at all because one partner is already married to someone else (or has never been legally married).


An annulment is a legal procedure that ends a marriage. It’s different from divorce, which ends a marriage but doesn’t nullify it. A marriage is void or invalid and can be annulled if it should never have occurred.

An annulment determines that the Catholic Church recognizes three causes of nullity:

  • Lack of consent.
  • Defect in form (such as when one party was under 18 years old).
  • Defect in canonical form (for example, if there were not enough witnesses).

In these cases, annulments are also known as “divorces.”

Getting an Annulment

There are many ways to get an annulment, but it’s important to know that only a judge can grant you one. If you want a divorce, other steps must be taken first.

To get an annulment, the petitioner (the person trying for the annulment) will have to prove that their marriage was not valid under the law by showing some evidence that shows why their marriage wasn’t legal. This evidence can include things like:

  • The fact that neither party was old enough at the time of their wedding, or
  • The fact that either party wasn’t mentally capable of knowing what they were doing when they married each other, or
  • That one person isn’t able/willing anymore because they have a mental illness and need help getting over this problem before continuing with life.

Annulment Being Granted

If you think your marriage has been annulled, it means that it was void from its start, and there was never any official proceeding for it to be recognized. This can happen in different ways:

  • When one of the parties does not consent to the marriage, this is called nullity.
  • When either party refuses to consummate their vows (i.e., engage in sexual intercourse with each other), this is called dispense.
  • When a spouse has been coerced into marrying someone against his/her will by threats or force, this is called bigamy or polygamy.
  • In some cases, where two men wanted women, but only one could marry them at once due to certain circumstances, such as age restrictions being placed on these unions between male/female parties before court approval could occur. Someone else would have had access only after waiting another year until their respective partners’ eligibility expired.”


Divorce is the ending of a marriage in legal terms. It’s a court ruling that terminates a marriage and grants both parties the right to remarry. A divorce may be granted for any reason, including adultery or living apart for five years without cohabitation.

Divorce is not the same as annulment. While an annulment is also known as a declaration by the court that there never was a valid marriage (a nullity), it can be used only after an unsuccessful attempt at reconciliation with your spouse, otherwise, you’d have already been divorced.

Getting A Divorce

The process of divorce is quite simple. If you and your spouse have been married for at least one year and the marriage has broken down irretrievably, then there is no need to go through the court procedure. You can apply for a decree of judicial separation or annulment as per the law in your state.

There are two methods through which one can get divorced: by mutual consent or by mutual consent with the help of legal proceedings like PIL & NIL, both these methods require filing certain documents before taking them forward with their respective courts/authorities.

Divorce Being Granted

It can be granted in cases of irreconcilable differences and when one of the spouses is impotent, insane, or already married.

Marriages are also dissolved if one or both have abandoned their spouse for a long time, this occurs when one person has left their home because they cannot live with another person anymore.

Suppose you think your marriage isn’t working out anymore, but you still love each other. In that case, it might be possible for you to file for an annulment instead of divorce because annulments allow people who want out of their marriages without having any legal consequences (like paying alimony payments).

Divorce and Annulment Being Two Separate Things

Divorce and annulment are two separate things. Divorce is a legal process that terminates a marriage, but it does not change the fact that you are still married to your partner. Annulment is a legal process in which the marriage is considered invalid because of fraud or lack of consent, this means that neither spouse was legally entitled to marry at all.

Divorces and annulments may be granted only by judges or justices, who make decisions based on the evidence presented during court hearings. In most cases, both spouses must agree before requesting an annulment from either state courts or federal courts—if one partner wants out but doesn’t want to go through with divorce proceedings themselves (like if someone has no interest in getting married again), then they can ask for an exception so long as their reason for wanting separation was genuine enough (for example: “I don’t want children anymore.”)

If you are looking and are ready to start a new life and need the services of a divorce lawyer, contact us today at centralchamberslaw.com for a free consultation with an attorney who can help you with all of your legal needs.