What is an annulment?
An annulment voids the marriage as if it never occurred. A marriage can be void or is voidable for the following causes:
- not obtaining a valid marriage license and holding a solemnization ceremony performed by a officiant licensed in Virginia, in that order.
- a marriage entered into prior to the dissolution of an earlier marriage of one of the parties;
- a marriage between an ancestor and descendant, or between a brother and a sister, whether the relationship is by the half or the whole blood or by adoption; a marriage between an uncle and a niece or between an aunt and a nephew, whether the relationship is by the half or the whole blood.
- all marriages solemnized when either of the parties lacked capacity to consent to the marriage at the time the marriage was solemnized, because of mental incapacity or infirmity, shall be void from the time they shall be so declared by a decree of divorce or nullity;
- all marriages solemnized on or after July 1, 2016, when either or both of the parties were, at the time of the solemnization, under the age of 18 and have not otherwise emancipated be void from the time they shall be so declared by a decree of divorce or nullity.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, this section shall not apply to a lawful marriage entered in another state or country prior to the parties being domiciled in the Commonwealth.
- In the case of natural or incurable impotency of body existing at the time of entering into the marriage contract, or when, prior to the marriage, either party, without the knowledge of the other, had been convicted of a felony, or when, at the time of the marriage, the wife, without the knowledge of the husband, was with child by some person other than the husband, or where the husband, without knowledge of the wife, had fathered a child born to a woman other than the wife within 10 months after the date of the solemnization of the marriage, or where, prior to the marriage, either party had been, without the knowledge of the other, a prostitute, a decree of annulment may be entered upon proof, on complaint of the party aggrieved.
No annulment for a marriage alleged to be void or voidable or by virtue of fraud or duress shall be decreed by a Court if it appears that the party applying for such annulment has cohabited with the other after knowledge of the facts giving rise to what otherwise would have been grounds for annulment, and in no event shall any such decree be entered if the parties had been married for a period of two years prior to the institution of such suit for annulment. Va. Code 20-89.1.