My wife got a divorce and defrauded me in the settlement! I want to know if I can try to get an annulment that will wipe out the marriage completely and thus make the divorce settlement null and void. I have a very good legal case for the annulment!
3 Answers from Attorneys
Annulments for fraud in California are based on fraud that led to the parties getting married, not fraud that induced a settlement during divorce.
A judgment of nullity on the ground of ‘fraud’ is proper only in extreme cases where the particular fraud goes to the very essence of the marriage relation. “A marriage may be annulled for fraud only in an extreme case where the particular fraud goes to the very essence of the marriage relation.” (In re Marriage of Ramirez (4th Dist. 2008) 165 Cal.App.4th 751, 757.)
Instead, the particular fraudulent intention must relate to the sexual or procreative aspects of marriage. In the absence of this type of fraud, the longstanding rule is that neither party may question the validity of the marriage upon the ground of express or implied representations of the other with respect to such matters as character, habits, chastity, business or social standing, financial worth or prospects, or matters of a similar nature. (In re Marriage of Meagher and Maleki (4th Dist. 2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 1, 3.)
You haven't set forth any grounds to show us that you are entitled to an annulment. With that said, an annulment would simply render the marriage void. It would not address or solve problems that are the subject of the settlement agreement, such as child support, spousal support, child custody and visitation, or division of property.
If your spouse lied about assets or liabilities you have, then you can return to court based on the need to properly divide those items.