Marital Annulment in New Mexico
Divorce Papers » Marital Annulment in New Mexico
Annulment in New Mexico is granted in the form of a court order or decree thus making it invalid, null and void right from the inception and erasing the marriage from the state records. The annulment process in New Mexico is similar to the divorce process of the state. It is very difficult to get an annulment in the state of New Mexico because citing certain grounds to terminate the marriage is a pre-requisite for filing an annulment. These grounds must really exist and need to be proved in the court.
Grounds for Annulment in New Mexico:
The grounds for annulment in New Mexico are specified by the statute just like the other states. At least one of these grounds must exist and need to be cited in order to get an annulment. Besides, it is also necessary to submit the proofs supporting the claims and allegations of the petitioner. These grounds are as follows:
Physical Disability - If a person is physically disabled, which causes hindrance for him / her to contribute in the household expenses or chores or other responsibilities that are crucial for the normal functioning of a marriage, the partner can file for an annulment on the basis of physical disability. This could include anything from being sexually incapable to being a handicap, which makes it impossible for a partner to function normally.
However, the disability should be hidden from the petitioner during the time of marriage. It is not possible to get an annulment if the court finds out that the partner was aware of this disability while getting married and yet the marriage was entered into. In such cases, the court advises the couple to go for a divorce case instead.
Fraud - If a person commits a fraud such as hiding the real identity, previous sex-change operation, imprisonment, incarceration due to mental illness, sexual incapacity such as impotency, sterility etc. to lure the person to enter the wedlock, such marriage is considered to be based on fraud and thus the marriage can be annulled. The fraud can be committed to escape from the conviction of felony, securing the citizenship of the country or any other reason that makes it necessary for the person to get married.
It is very difficult to prove the charges of fraud in front of the court as these things cannot be proved without the testimonies from the witnesses, which are difficult to find.
Duress - If a person is held at a gunpoint or a knife point so as to get him / her to marry one, such a marriage is considered to be based on duress or force. Duress comprises of threats to kill self, the person or the family members, coercion by holding someone hostage or by any other means, which do not leave any options but to get married to the wronged spouse. Such marriages are popularly known as, 'gunshot marriages' and they are difficult to prove owing to the threats to life and well-being of several people.
However, if any witnesses or documentation such as letters could be provided, the court can grant an annulment in such cases.
Mental Incapacity - If a spouse is mentally incapable due to the diagnosis of mental illness or insanity, the other spouse can file for annulment on the grounds of mental incapacity. The mentally incapable spouse cannot provide for the family as well as, is unable to protect the well-being of the spouse and the children. Besides, they are a threat to themselves as well as those around them when they are suffering from one of the attacks.
Even if the person suffers from the bouts of insanity, it is impossible to tell when he / she will have an attack and what will be the consequences of such attacks. The safety of the family members cannot be guaranteed in such cases.
Again, the requirement is that the petitioner must not be aware of this fact before getting married. It should be discovered after cohabiting for some time. The testimony of the medical experts and the reports can be produced in the court as proofs.
Bigamy - A person is legally prohibited to marry someone else when he / she is already married to a person and the marriage has not been dissolved either by death or by divorce. It is a legal offense, along with polygamy, polygyny and polyandry. Having more than one marital partner is considered as bigamy, and such a marriage is null and void right from the inception in the eyes of the law.
The proofs of the previous marriage such as the certificate, the license or the photographs can be used as exhibits to get an annulment on the base of bigamy.
Underage Marriage - Marriage of the person who is under the legal marriageable age is a legal offense and carries a sentence as per the state law of New Mexico. The underage spouse can file for annulment or the guardian and the parents can file on behalf of him / her.
The age proof needs to be submitted along with the marriage license and the certificate. Photographs, if any, should also be submitted along with the medical test reports confirming the age of the underage spouse.
Incestuous Marriage - Marriage which falls under consanguinity or affinity, which is termed as incest, in simple but harsh terms is a legal offense as per the state law of New Mexico. Such marriages are void ab initio and have to be annulled.
The proof of the relationship between the parties has to be produced in front of the court so as to confirm the allegation made by the petitioner.
Annulment is difficult and rare in New Mexico owing to the grounds and the difficulty in proving them. Besides, it is a time-consuming and a costly process as compared to the divorce process in this state.