Annulment in Alabama

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An annulment in Alabama is the legal declaration that a valid marriage never existed. The declaration is issued in the form of a legal decree that makes the union null and void. The couple is returned to their premarital status both financially and socially. The couple can remarry and build a new life free of restraints.

Grounds for Annulment in Alabama:

In order to get an annulment in Alabama, the petitioner needs to cite certain grounds and provide proofs supporting those allegations and claims. These grounds need to really exist as the court representatives verify these grounds by their own means. These grounds are specified by the statute. These grounds are as follows:

  • Intoxication - If the couple got married under the influence of either drugs or alcohol and do not remember getting married at all, they can file for an annulment according to the statute of Alabama. They just have to testify that they were 'drunk as a skunk' while getting married and do not remember anything about the wedding. The court may call in the priest or the witness who signed the marriage certificate along with the couple.

    In such cases, the court usually grants the annulment as it is an obvious case of the mistake most people make after spending an ideal evening, drinking and enjoying themselves. Being under the influence of drugs, alcohol or any other medication renders the person incomprehensible and reckless and they are unable to make any logical decision; let alone the decision to get married.

    After verifying the witnesses and the other documentation, the court is likely to grant annulment in such cases. However, if the court finds any discrepancies in the statements of the witnesses and the couple, the judge can order them to seek a divorce instead of an annulment.

  • Same-sex Marriage - The marriages between the couples of the same sex is a legally punishable offense in the state of Alabama. These marriages cannot exist and thus cannot be validated, period. The couples in such a marriage are not accepted as other married couples and their marriage is always invalid; void ab initio, null, right from its inception.

    These marriages have to be annulled as the gay and lesbian couples are not accepted by the state law, let alone the citizens of the state.

    The proof of such a marriage has to be presented to the court. This could be anything from the marriage license, certificate, photographs or the testimony of the officiant or the witnesses who signed the marriage certificate along with the couple. The annulment is almost immediately granted in such cases as this is a marriage prohibited by the state law. In effect, it is not a marriage but a legal offense.

  • Consanguinity - The marriages between the people from the same blood line are not allowed according to the state law of Alabama. The marriages between the mother - son, father - daughter, grandson - grandmother, granddaughter - grandfather, brother - sister, step mother - step son, step daughter - step father, step sister - step brother, cousins, aunt - niece, uncle - nephew or any other blood relations is termed as incestuous, which is prohibited by the state law.

    Even if the parties are not aware of their relationship, they should file for an annulment as soon as they learn about the blood relation they share. The proof has to be submitted to the court and the annulment can be granted immediately. The children born to this marriage are considered as legitimate and both the parents are equally responsible for them.

  • Impotency - The physical or mental inability to consummate the marriage by either of the partners is a firm ground for an annulment in the state of Alabama. The sexual relationship between a husband and a wife is the base of every marriage and if either of the partners is unable to satisfy the sexual urges of the partner, it can count as a ground for an annulment.

    However, the physical inability has to be proved with the help of a medical check up which determines the sexual health of an individual. The reports of this check up have to be submitted to the court in order to facilitate the judges' decision in favor of an annulment.

  • Bigamy - If a person marries another when he / she is already married to someone else and that marriage has not been dissolved as yet, the person is termed to have practiced bigamy which is a legal offense according to the statute of Alabama. The proof of the person's bigamy is to be presented to the court, which can be anything from the testimony form the first spouse or the documentation that confirms that the marriage is still very much legal and unbroken.

  • Underage Marriage - The legal marriageable age for an Alabama citizen is 14. Any person below 14 is not allowed to marry and if he / she does, the parents or the guardian can file for an annulment on the grounds of the marriage being underage.

    The only probable exception to this rule is the situation where the girl is pregnant and the couple has to get married for the child's sake. A petition has to be filed before the underage partner turns 14 and crosses the legal marriageable age.

These grounds are fairly limited and thus annulment in Alabama becomes a rare occurrence.

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