What is the difference between a Divorce and an Annulment in California?

California Lawyer Norman Gregory Fernandez discusses Divorce and AnnulmentThe difference between a divorce and an annulment is that in the case of an annulment, the marriage is void, voidable, or not legal from its inception. A divorce involves the legal termination of a marriage by court order. In most cases it’s much more difficult to obtain an annulment, than a divorce.

Examples of void, voidable, or marriages not legal from their inception are: certain marriages between relatives (incest); marriages to minors who are not emancipated (under 18 in California); marriages that are not legal in other States; marriages in California where a proper license was not obtained, or where a ceremony of marriage was not performed, or where the marriage was not consummated; marriages to persons who did not have the capacity to enter into a marriage, etc.

Many people are under the mistaken belief that they can have there marriages annulled if they were only married for a few weeks. This is a mistaken belief, if a license was obtained, a ceremony was performed, and the marriage was consummated. Unless it can be shown that the marriage was void, voidable, or not legal from its inception, you will have to go through the dissolution of marriage process. (Divorce)

My firm does family law in Southern California. You may contact me through my family law website by clicking here, or by calling 818-584-8831.

By Norman Gregory Fernandez, Esq., © 2007

3 Responses to What is the difference between a Divorce and an Annulment in California?

  1. I think people should take more responsibility for their actions. Those people who got married just for the fun of it and after a few weeks think they can obtain an annulment just like that, should think again and should have thought of the consequences. You don’t play with the law.

  2. There are various reasons why marriages finish in divorce, but the precise reason of divorce varies for each couple. But now the solution is available divorce prevention program is a best way to stop divorce and save your marriage. This helpful prevention program is the course used to decrease divorce rate and reinforce marriage relationships for healthy relationships. Get more helpful information to how to do stop divorce and save your marriage relationships from this site.


  3. Thanks for the information! I was talking to my friends when they asked me if I want to divorce my husband or have my marriage annulled. I’ve always thought that when couples want to separate, they usually get a divorce. I didn’t know that annulments usually just make a marriage void, and they’re more difficult to get than a divorce. I’m more interested in terminating my marriage by the court, so it seems more in my best interest to get a divorce.

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