When an attempted marriage fails to meet the requirements of a valid marriage, it is sometimes possible to void the marriage through an action for annulment. Misrepresentation, fraud, duress, or undue influence by either party may also create a basis for annulment. Bigamous marriages in which one party was already legally married to another spouse at the time of the marriage ceremony are automatically invalid without an action for annulment. All other invalid marriages are considered valid until an action for annulment commences and a judge declares the marriage void.

An annulment is not a divorce. Divorce recognizes that there was a valid marriage that has ended. Annulment recognizes that the parties were never married. Therefore, the parties to an annulled marriage generally are not entitled to equitable distribution, post-separation support, or alimony. If you are considering seeking an annulment, it is in your best interest to seek professional legal guidance to determine both your eligibility for an annulment and the legal and practical consequences.