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What are grounds for annulment in Texas?

In certain cases, a person may be able to avoid the divorce process altogether by having the marriage annulled by a Texas judge. As an annulment means that the marriage was never valid to begin with, a court must see that specific criteria are met in order to grant one.

A person who was married while under the age of 18 without consent from his or her parents may have the marriage annulled. The petitioner can be a parent, legal guardian or a next friend. Once the person who was married turns 18, third parties may not petition for an annulment.

Other situations where a marriage could be eligible for an annulment include a marriage that took place while one of the parties was under the influence of a mind-altering substance. A person who consented to a marriage because of the other party's use of force or fraud may also have their marriage annulled. The mental incapacity of one party that resulted in an inability for them to knowingly consent to marriage may also be grounds for annulment. If one party concealed a prior divorce or impotency from the other party until after the marriage ceremony, a judge may approve a petition for an annulment.

There are many other reasons why a marriage may be eligible for annulment. A person who was involved in a marriage ceremony while underage or intoxicated may wish to speak with a lawyer about filing a petition for annulment. If the criteria for annulment are not met, a lawyer may also be able to help the individual with divorce planning.

Source: Texas Constitution and Statutes, "TITLE 1. THE MARRIAGE RELATIONSHIP", September 29, 2014

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