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How to annul a marriage

While “divorce” and “annulment” are separate concepts, they both refer to marital contracts. A legitimate marriage must be dissolved legally to be declared null and void, requiring a divorce action. Contrarily, the legal process through which the marriage is declared invalid is the annulment of the marriage contract. A lawful marriage is required before an annulment may be declared, and a Muslim marriage must meet the legal criteria to be valid.

Muslim marriage must meet following legal criteria to be valid:

  • In the United Arab Emirates, a Sharia Court must record a marriage contract.
  • Muslim marriages are only permitted when a person is 18 Hijri years old. However, it is possible to be married earlier with the judge’s special permission.
  • An individual’s and spouse’s age cannot be more than two times the same. If so, the couple must get the judge’s special consent before marriage.
  • “Premarital screening” certification.
  • The presence of the bride and groom, as well as two (2) Muslim male witnesses and the bride’s father (or his legal representative), is required.
  • Since in Islam, forced marriage is forbidden, the couple’s permission. When a marriage is approved via deception or coercion, the relationship is seen as illegal and violates Sharia Law.
  • Legal guardian approval is required to proceed. When a woman’s father has passed away, her nearest male relative is her legal guardian.
  • A certificate of no objection is required in several situations.

What you need to Know: The New UAE Non-Muslim Family Law

Marriage annulment:

The legal process through which the marriage is deemed null and invalid is known as marriage annulment. Several legal prerequisites must be satisfied for a marriage to be recognized as lawful and enforceable. Marriage must meet these characteristics to be valid.

Legal prerequisites for a “Sharia or Muslim Marriage” and “Legal Requirements for a Non-Muslim Marriage” are two broad categories in which the many legal requirements for a legitimate marriage may be roughly categorized.

Civil Marriage Annulment

A court may issue you a civil Marriage Annulment, which dissolves your marriage. When a court grants an annulment request, it’s as if the marriage never took place. By submitting a petition (legal request) to the court outlining the grounds (reasons) for an annulment, any spouse may ask for the dissolution of the marriage.

Reasons to annul a marriage

The main factor in every divorce is that the couple no longer wants to remain together, regardless of the cause. Marriages that shouldn’t have taken place at all are annulled. In addition, a person could also request an annulment for other reasons.

The most frequent reasons to annul a marriage are:

  1. Related To Religion

Due to their beliefs, some people—especially those who belong to the Roman Catholic Church—might wish to consider getting an annulment—remarrying after several religions prohibit a divorce. In these situations, annulling a relationship is the ideal way to separate. It enables the remarriage of both parties and the acceptance of such remarriage in civil and religious contexts.

  1. Legal Reasons

Annulments may also be simpler to process and complete legally. There are fewer things to consider while receiving an annulment and dealing with the consequences. The first problem is timing: getting an annulment generally takes less time than getting a divorce. When both parties have agreed that a marriage was never valid, to begin with, there are fewer issues and choices to be addressed during a divorce. Then, it would be simpler to wrap up the proceedings and the case as a whole. Additionally, due to how they handle issues involving personal property, annulments are simpler than divorces. Restoring a person’s prior social and financial position is the fundamental goal of an annulment.

You may want to know: How to Choose the Best Divorce Lawyers or Attorney?

Grounds for annulment of marriage

An annulment is not granted to every marriage or under every scenario, as was already established. For an annulment to be granted, the couple must satisfy the governing body’s requirements and provide evidence that the marriage was unlawful in some manner. The following grounds for annulment of marriage are often accepted:

  1. In the absence of Wali

A marriage must have two contractual parties, namely the groom and the wali (Guardian), who are typically the bride’s father but may also be another male relative of the bride’s side in his absence. Without a guardian’s presence, a marriage contract is invalid. The pair will be split apart if the marriage is legally recognized. So, if a lady has no guardian, the judge will serve in that capacity. There must be no obstacles to the marriage between the couples and no legal restrictions on them. The following list includes the kind of obstacles that can annul a marriage:

  1. Prohibited Degree of Relationship

Marriages between individuals who are related to one another by blood or sharing a close relationship are forbidden and invalid under Sharia Law. For instance, brother and sister, mother and son, daughter and father, uncle and niece, aunt and nephew, etc.

  1. Polyandry

Having many husbands at once is referred to as polyandry. Muslim law prohibits a Muslim lady from getting married to more than one guy at once. Therefore, a later marriage is regarded invalid if the lady is already married at the time of the wedding.

  1. Religious diversity (Marriage with non-Muslim)

According to Sharia law, a man may wed either a Kitabia woman or a Muslim female. A kitabia is a person who adheres to a form of revealed religion or religious holy texts, such as those found in Judaism and Christianity. A Muslim man may wed a female who is a Christian or Jew.

  1. Free Consent

Obtaining the partners’ free consent is one of the fundamental conditions for a marriage to be legitimate. Marriage in Islam is invalid in the absence of free consent. The Islamic religion forbids forced marriages. Thus, a marriage is deemed illegal and violates sharia law when the marriage agreement is gained by coercion or deception.

Marriage annulment time frame

Unlike a divorce, no minimum period of marriage is required if you consider getting an annulment. If one of the scenarios above applies, you are permitted to annul your marriage the day after you are hitched. However, there are deadlines in some situations, so if you’re considering getting an annulment, take your time. You are always free to obtain an annulment if your partner is already married to someone else. If you learn that your spouse is underage, you can only obtain an annulment while they are still of legal age. As long as the mental disease persists, you may choose to dissolve the marriage.

Can i annul my marriage?

Either party may submit a petition (legal request) for an annulment case. An annulment is not, however, automatically granted to every marriage. Because of this, nullifications for marriage are significantly less prevalent than divorces.

Only valid grounds for the marriage can result in an annulment being issued (reasons). The individual who requested the annulment must provide the following present evidence of these grounds to the court.

When is a marriage annulled after years of separation?

A divorce-like process called annulment is used to dissolve a marriage. An annulment of a marriage can be obtained at any point following the wedding, unlike divorce. You could request an annulment if you don’t want to be divorced because of religious beliefs. To prove that the marriage is invalid for one of the grounds mentioned earlier, you must first establish that it was never valid, to begin with.

How may Marriage Annulment Lawyer at HHS Lawyers and Legal Consultants assist you?

If you’re prepared to begin the marriage Annulment, the first step is to get in touch with a qualified attorney nearby. The only thing you need to do is provide the information required to nullify the marriage. Our attorneys in Dubai will also clarify the details to determine if the annulment is feasible. The legal process will be quick and straightforward if both spouses agree, especially with the assistance of a marriage Annulment lawyer.

Hazim Darwish

Hazim Darwish, is a Senior Partner of HHS Lawyers in UAE. Practicing law for almost a decade, he has in-depth knowledge on UAE legislation with particular expertise on legal drafting, contract drafting, labor disputes, family law, and regulatory compliance for business organizations. Hazim Darwish also provides counsel on legal rights and obligations in the UAE to clients, including individuals and businesses subject to investigation or prosecution under Criminal Law by major regulators.