Colorado Springs Annulment Lawyer
What is an Annulment?
In Colorado, a marriage can be declared invalid or void in a process commonly referred to as an annulment. Knowing which factors above apply is critical to achieving a better outcome. If you and your spouse are considering dissolving a marriage, contact the team at Drexler Law. Our Colorado Springs annulment lawyers have successfully achieved invalidating or annulling marriages with a thorough understanding of the law and how to apply it.
What Is Required for an Annulment?
In Colorado, declaring the invalidity of a marriage is also known as an annulment. There are several requirements to annul a marriage. For example, if one party is unable to provide consent at the time of the marriage, then it would officially be considered an invalid marriage. Below, we explain the requirements in detail.
Not all marriages can be annulled. However, with the help of an experienced annulment attorney, you may be able to make a case as to why your marriage qualifies.
Colorado courts are required to invalidate a marriage where:
- A party lacked the capacity to consent to the marriage at the time the marriage was solemnized, including situations where one of the parties was under the influence
- A party lacked the physical capacity to consummate the marriage by sexual intercourse, and the other party did not at the time the marriage was contracted know of the incapacity
- A party was underage and did not have the consent of his parents or guardian or judicial approval
- One party entered into the marriage in reliance upon a fraudulent act or representation of the other party, which fraudulent act or representation goes to the essence of the marriage
- The parties were married when one or both were under duress exercised by either the other party or someone else altogether (you know, the shotgun wedding!), whether or not such other party knew the other party was under duress at the time of the marriage
- One or both parties entered into the marriage as a dare
- The marriage is illegal, i.e. polygamy, relative marriages
In some cases, multiple factors may exist; however, certain factors may be the source of major contention which will result in additional litigation and perhaps the denial of the petition for invalidity.
When to Seek an Annulment or Invalidity
Think of a situation where a party lacks the physical ability to consummate the marriage. Alleging this fact alone may cause unnecessary embarrassment and cause an immediate defensive reaction. Oftentimes, additional factors may be satisfied that will yield the same result (i.e. invalidating the marriage).
The "drunk wedding" may also give rise to one or more factors; however, intoxication in itself can be more difficult to prove in a court of law than you might think. Therefore, gathering witnesses and other documentation (i.e. a bar tab or credit card receipts showing the timing of alcohol consumption) is important to substantiate the claim for invalidity where a party lacked the capacity to consent to the marriage.
Attempting to prove that a party was influenced, coerced or pressured by the other party or a third party can also be challenging. In these cases, the parties will need to establish to the court's satisfaction the presence of the influence and the impact it had on the ability of the party to resist the pressure to marry.
Colorado Annulment Residency Requirements
The good news is that as long as the marriage occurred in Colorado or at least one of the parties has been domiciled in Colorado for 30 days, a petition for invalidity can be filed with the court. By law, children born or adopted of an invalid marriage are deemed to be legitimate children. This designation can often be a sensitive issue because the conventional thought is that children would be considered illegitimate; however, Colorado law provides just the opposite.
Contact an attorney right away if you believe you have grounds to invalidate your marriage because certain timelines and deadlines apply to filing a petition for invalidity. In some cases, the deadline is as little as six months from the date of marriage.
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