Annulment is an often misinterpreted legal concept due to popular cultural and religious different presentations of Annulment. In this article, we solely focus on “civil annulments” and not “religious annulments” which are only issued by a church or clergy member.
The correspondence between annulment in Alaska and divorce lies in the fact that they both make a resolution about marital status. However, the key difference between them is that divorce means ending an already existing and legitimate marriage, in contrast, an annulment states that what everyone thought was a marriage was never actually a marriage at all. According to the law, an unusual marriage never really happened.
Annulment in Alaska is somewhat different from the rest of the country. In Alaska, there is no official judicial process known as “annulment of marriage.” You can, however, request that a judge proclaim your marriage “invalid,” which has a similar impact. Because the partners lacked the capacity (legal ability) to enter into a marriage, a “void marriage” was never valid from the start.
The distinction between a void marriage and a marriage that has been annulled is subtle. When a spouse goes to court and a judge declares a marriage null and void, it’s as if the marriage never existed (also known as a “legal nullity”). However, whether or not you go to court, a void marriage has no legal consequences. A void marriage does not have any legal standing.
What is the difference between annulment and divorce?
Annulment in Alaska differs from divorce in that it deals with flaws in a marriage that existed at the time it was formed. When a marriage is annulled because it was constituted illegally, the parties regain their rights and obligations as they were previous to the marriage. A divorce, on the other hand, deals with issues that arise after the marriage has been created. Traditionally, after a divorce, the parties’ legal status as ex-spouses is maintained, which includes property split, child custody, and alimony.
Annulments in Alaska are growing more like divorces in that courts can now split marital property, mandate the payment of spousal support or alimony, and declare practically anything that a divorce decree would. Unlike divorce, however, certain rights or entitlements from a prior marriage, such as worker’s compensation payments or alimony, will be reinstated upon annulment, because the ruling legally declares the marriage null and void.
Grounds for Requesting a Judicial Decision that a Marriage Is Void
You can ask an Alaska court to order your marriage invalid in seven different situations:
• One of the parties was already married (bigamy).
• The parties involved are more closely related than third cousins.
• At the time of the marriage, one of the parties was a minor who did not get the approval of a parent or guardian.
• Either one of the parties are “mentally ill” (seriously mentally ill).
• One of the parties used deception to persuade the other to consent to the marriage.
• One side used force (legally known as “duress”) to persuade the other to marry.
• There have been no sexual connections between the parties.
Bear in mind that if you and your spouse carry on living together after one of the following events, the judge will not declare your marriage void. You’ll have to file for divorce instead:
• The parties freely lived together after the minor achieved legal age, and after their mental states improved.
• After the deceived party learnt of the fraud, the parties agreed to live together.
• After being forced into marriage, the parties lived together willingly.
• After having sexual encounters, the parties agreed to live together.
How do I Get a Court Order Voiding my Marriage?
There are no forms in Alaska that you may use to ask a judge to rule your marriage illegitimate. In order to prepare your annulment papers you can complete our online registration and we can complete your entire papers instantly.
It is essential to consult services like Get Divorce Papers before asking a judge to declare your marriage null and void. Because the court only splits assets and debts in the instance of a divorce or separation, there could be extremely serious financial repercussions for you, in addition to the custodial and child support concerns you’ll face if you have children.
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you seek the court to declare your marriage invalid, your spouse has the right to file a separate action with the court to have the marriage declared valid. The court will hear all of the evidence, read all of the statutes and documents, and then make a decision.
Before launching the lawsuit, the “plaintiff” (the individual who wants the judge to declare the marriage void) has to be a resident of Alaska.
Effect of an Annulment in Alaska
Some people are concerned that if their marriage is annulled, their children’s paternity will be brought into question. Technically, this is correct. Because an annulled marriage has no legal standing, the children born as a result of the “marriage” are born to single parents. This, however, is just a technical distinction with hardly any practical significance since Alaska law demands the court that rules on annulment to also rule on custody and support, although the annulled marriage was never valid.
The Alaska court that hears the invalid or lawful marriage case will ensure that parentage is determined and custody and child support orders are entered, or they will refer the matter to another court. If you have children, you should seek an attorney’s consult about this.
Because a void marriage is legally considered to have never existed, an Alaska court lacks the legislative jurisdiction to award alimony or distribute property or debts in a family dispute. The argument behind this is that if there was no legitimate marriage, there can’t be a marital estate. When a marriage comes to an end, the marital estate is divided instead.