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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 29803
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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I'm married and recently found out that my wife from my

Customer Question

I'm married and recently found out that my wife from my previous marriage didn't file the divorce papers like she claimed she did. What do I need to do? I read that I would have to annul my current marriage and then divorce my previous marriage, is that correct?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.


I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

Do you want to remain married to your current spouse?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I do, but she says that she wants us to be married the right way.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
she's talking about leaving me until my previous marriage is resolved
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Thank you. I'm sorry to hear that.

If your ultimate goal is to remain married, you don't have to go through the process of formally annulling it. You can simply file for divorce, then have a second wedding ceremony after the divorce is final. The first marriage is not legally valid, but you only need to have a judge declare it invalid if you were separating property or had to determine child custody or child support issues. Since you're going to stay together once it's legal, that's not necessary.

Please rate my answer positively to ensure I get credit for the time I spend helping. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. Thank you.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
How is the first marriage not legally valid? Or do you mean the marriage that I'm in now isn't legally valid, because I'm legally still married to my first wife?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

I meant your first marriage to your current wife. I'm sorry.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Well my current wife is saying that's she wants to get an annulment until I'm divorced from my first marriage. What steps do I need to take and how long will having the annulment granted take?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

If she feels that it's necessary, you can file a Petition to Annul Marriage with the local family courthouse. The courts don't make free forms available, because annulment is pretty uncommon (and a lot of people try to file when they don't qualify - the state doesn't want to encourage that).

Some sites Petitions available for purchase, or you could visit a law library and check out books that show you what the Petition should look like, if there's one near you.

Once you have the Petition, you file it and pay the fee, then they'll notify you of the court date .How long it takes depends entirely on how busy the courthouse is, because you need to go to trial. In some areas, it could take several months. The clerk of the court might give you a better idea of how soon you'd get to trial.

There is no legal reason to wait until the annulment is finalized before filing for the divorce.

Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Did you have any other questions about this?