Orlando Simplified Dissolution & Annulments Attorney
Orlando Family Law Attorneys Helping Clients with Simplified Dissolutions and Annulments
When a couple wants to get divorced shortly after getting married, or if they believe that their divorce is likely to be quick and simple, they might wonder if they are eligible for an annulment instead. It is important to understand that annulment is not the same as divorce, and that annulment is not possible in cases where the marriage was legal. Instead, the couple might want to consider a simplified dissolution of marriage. We will say more about how this works, and we will explain the difference between divorce and annulment.
A compassionate and experienced Orlando family law attorney at Greater Orlando Family Law can speak with you today about your case and can help to determine the best course of action for you.
Seeking a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage in Orlando
Nobody enters into a marriage with the expectation that the relationship will not work out, or that there will be an immediate need to dissolve the legal relationship. However, anywhere from 40 percent to 50 percent of marriages end in divorce, and about 13 percent of the Florida population is divorced according to U.S. Census Bureau data.
For some couples, divorce in Florida can be relatively fast and easy with a simplified dissolution of marriage. In order to be eligible, one of the parties must file a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage (Form 12.901(a)), and all of the following must be true:
- Both parties agree that the marriage is irretrievably broken, and that there is no chance of saving the marriage;
- No minor or dependent children resulted from the marriage, there were no minor or dependent children born during the marriage, and the wife is not currently pregnant;
- Both parties have come to a full agreement about the division of marital property, including both assets (how those assets will be divided between the parties) and debts (who will pay the debts or take on the remaining debts of the marriage);
- Neither party is seeking alimony;
- Both parties are willing to give up their right to a trial and to appeal;
- Both parties are willing to visit the clerk of court office to sign the Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage (they do not have to do this at the same time or together); and
- Both parties are willing to appear—at the same time—at the final hearing.
What is the Difference Between Divorce and Annulment?
While divorce and annulment are similar in process, there is a key difference. Unlike divorce, annulment is only possible when the marriage was not legal in the first place. In other words, an annulment is only an appropriate way to legally make clear that the marriage is invalid. Examples of scenarios in which an annulment might be appropriate include but are not limited to:
- Lack of consent to the marriage;
- Marriage by fraud, duress, or deception;
- Lack of mental capacity; and/or
- One or both of the parties was underage and did not have parental consent.
Consummation of the marriage may mean that an annulment is not possible, and the couple should speak with a lawyer about filing for divorce.
Contact an Orlando Family Lawyer Today
Do you need assistance filing for divorce or seeking an annulment? A family law attorney in Orlando can help with your case. Contact Greater Orlando Family Law to learn more about how the advocates at our firm can assist with your case.