If I have been married for less than 3 months and my spouse lied to me about his age, does this meet the requirements toobtain an annulment?

UPDATED: Aug 8, 2011

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If I have been married for less than 3 months and my spouse lied to me about his age, does this meet the requirements toobtain an annulment?

Asked on August 8, 2011 Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If your spouse was under the legal age of consent when you married, that would probably be grounds for an annulment--indeed, the marriage would probably be void from the very beginning, since someone under the age of consent cannot marry.

However, if, say, your spouse said that he was 24 when he was really 22, that might not be grounds for an annulment, since a difference of a few years at the point does not substantially go to the heart of the marriage--someone could marry a 21 year old as easily as a 24 year old. It becomes, if he was over the age of consent, an issue about how great the deception was and does it necessarily affect being married. For another example: say you thought he was 30 and it turns out he's 40...at  10 year gap could arguably affect your life arc together, whether he will want children, and other significant elements of being married.

So the short answer is, depending on the age gap and the absolute ages, the deception might or might not provide grounds for an annulment, and for a more definitive opinion, you need to check with a marriage or family law attorney who can evaluate all the circumstances in detail.

Also remember: even if you can't get an annulment, you can divorce.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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