If you are married and considering a separation, you may be reluctant to file for divorce for financial, legal or religious reasons. In some cases, there are other options. You may be able to go through a legal separation, or you may be able to terminate your marriage by going through a civil annulment.

Annulments are subject to state laws, so it is important to observe what the law says in the state in which you intend to terminate your marriage. In Pennsylvania, it is possible to invalidate a marriage by going through an annulment, but only in certain circumstances. The following blog will give an overview of when an annulment is possible in Pennsylvania.

When one spouse was underage at the time of the marriage

In Pennsylvania, a person must be 18 years of age before legally consenting to marriage. However, if the person’s parents gave consent, they can marry at the age of 16. If a person was under the age of 18 when they got married and they did not get their parent’s consent, the marriage can be annulled.

When one spouse was mentally incapacitated when entering into marriage

If one person was under the influence of alcohol or drugs when entering the marriage, they likely would not have been able to give consent. Similarly, if a person is suffering from a mental illness or a physical health condition that has led to mental incapacity when entering a marriage, the marriage may also be annulled.

When a spouse is already married

Bigamy and polygamy are illegal in the United States. If one spouse has an undissolved prior marriage still in existence, this can be grounds for annulment.

You sometimes need to act within a certain time frame for an annulment to be possible

If you want to go through an annulment because you or your spouse were underage or under the influence at the time of the marriage, action must be taken within 60 days to successfully annul the marriage.

An annulment can be a simpler way to end a marriage in certain situations. If you are going through marital struggles, it is a good idea that you consider all your options before proceeding.