The options for ending a short marriage are no different than the options for ending a long marriage.
These options include:
While this Guide doesn’t go as in-depth as other articles on our site, consider the following information about each different way to end your short marriage. . .
This is usually the best option for ending a short marriage.
To get an annulment in Nevada you must either live here or you must have been married here and you must meet the statutory grounds for an annulment.
There are two grounds for a Nevada annulment:
- A void marriage
- A voidable marriage
What’s the difference?
A void marriage is a marriage that cannot exist by law. In Nevada, this would include marrying a blood relative or getting married while still being married to someone else.
For example, we once had a client file for an annulment when she discovered 6 months after her wedding day that her husband never divorced his first wife. Since her husband could not be married to 2 women at the same time, the marriage was annulled as a void marriage.
A voidable marriage is one where one of the parties lacks intent to marry or the marriage is based on fraud or duress.
For example, we annulled the marriage of a couple who came to Las Vegas for a party, got rip roaring drunk, went to Elvis and got married thinking it was a joke. Since neither party wanted to be married or had any intention of being married and were so drunk they didn’t know what they were doing, the judge determined the marriage should be annulled as voidable.
Another example . . . we had a case where the woman discovered after she married that her husband had no intention of residing with her. He was only using her for immigration purposes. We were able to have the marriage annulled for fraud and it was deemed a voidable marriage.
Annulments in Nevada can be difficult to obtain and often require specific wording when being presented to a judge.
If you are considering getting a Nevada annulment you should consult with a family law attorney.
In addition, judges will really pay attention to the length of time of the marriage when deciding on voidable marriage annulments. If you think you want to annul your short-term marriage for fraud or lack of understanding, you shouldn’t wait. Get an annulment ASAP.
Divorce is the term for legally ending your marriage.
You don't have to be married in Nevada to file for divorce in Nevada.
Instead, to file for divorce in Nevada, you have to be a Nevada resident. This means you must reside in Nevada for at least 6 weeks before filing for divorce.
In addition, you must also have grounds for divorce in Nevada.
In Nevada, you can divorce for the following reasons:
1. Insanity existing for 2 years prior to the divorce;
2.If you have lived separate from your spouse for over 1 year; OR
3.If you decide that you and your spouse are incompatible in marriage
Most people in Nevada divorce for incompatibility.
Regardless of your reason for wanting a divorce, it is important to remember that Nevada is a no-fault jurisdiction.
This means that it doesn't matter whose fault the divorce is, the Court will apply the law and divide assets and debts and award alimony according to the Nevada statutes.
One more thing . . .
Nevada is a community property state. We go more into this later, but understand that in most divorces community assets and community debts will be equally divided between the spouses.
If you decide you want a divorce to end your short-term marriage, you should talk to a divorce attorney as soon as possible.
A legal separation is often the middle ground between being married and being divorced.
Essentially a couple may separate certain obligations such as assets or debts but still choose to remain legally married.
There are lots of different reasons people choose not to get divorced, but also choose to legally separate. These include:
- The parties don’t wish to divorce due to religious reasons
- To remain legally married until the ten-year deadline for certain Social Security benefits
- To remain legally married until the ten-year deadline for military pension enforcement advantages or a twenty-year deadline for PX and commissary benefits
- The parties wish to take a breather from the marriage but don’t wish to be responsible for the other’s debt during the break
- People also prefer legal separation over marriage for tax related benefits
- Some people stay legally married for medical and/or health reasons
The process for filing for a legal separation is essentially the same as for a divorce; however, once the parties receive a Decree of Separate Maintenance they are still married.
If the parties wish to remain married without the terms of the decree of separate maintenance, they can seek to dismiss their legal separation case.
If they wish to divorce, they must file further paperwork with the Court.
Now that you know the options available for ending your short-term marriage, you should consider things like alimony, child custody and dividing assets and debts which is addressed below.