Nullity Proceedings

When do nullity proceedings apply?

Nullity proceedings are relatively uncommon, but may be appropriate when divorce proceedings are not an option. If a marriage did not comply with the legal requirements of validity it may be void (treated as if it never existed) or voidable (valid until declared void).

Void marriages

  • Where the parties to the marriage are within prohibited degrees of relationship
  • Either party is under the age of 16, or 18 without required consents. 
  • Where the statutory requirements of notice and solemnization of marriage have not been complied with.
  • At the time of marriage either party was already married. 
  • The parties to the marriage are not respectively male and female. 
  • Any polygamous marriage entered into while either party was domiciled in England or Wales. 

Voidable marriages

  • Incapacity of either party to consummate the marriage.
  • Either party did not validly consent to the marriage. 
  • Either party was suffering from a mental disorder and was unfit to enter into a marriage. 
  • Either party was suffering from a venereal disease in a transferable form at the time of the marriage.
  • If the woman is pregnant by another man at the time of marriage. 

When can you apply for a nullity?

Unlike divorce or dissolution proceedings, the "one year rule" does not apply, which means that nullity proceedings can be issued within the first year of the marriage. 

Financial implications?

After the making of a decree of nullity the court has the power to make financial orders in the same way as it does in divorce and dissolution proceedings.  

Need more advice?

If you need more advice about nullity proceedings and its implications call us or apply online for a free case assessment.