A legal annulment is a decision by the court that the couple was never married. Some marriages are against the law, such as marriage between close relatives. Annulments are not necessary in such cases because, under the law, there is no marriage. Other marriages may be annulled by the court. For example:
- One of the parties was mentally limited, or
- One party was too young to marry, or
- The couple never had sexual intercourse.
The steps for getting an annulment are similar to the steps for getting a divorce. Most people need an attorney to get an annulment.
A legal annulment should not be confused with a religious annulment. For example, a Catholic may not be permitted to remarry in the church if the church has determined that the first marriage is null and void. This type of annulment is granted by the church, and has no legal effect according to Minnesota law. Likewise, a legal annulment or divorce may not affect how the church looks upon the marriage.