How To Annul A Marriage In Nigeria

How to Annul a Marriage in Nigeria

Marriage is a sacred bond that is meant to be kept for life. However, sometimes, things might not work out as planned, and couples may decide to end their marriage. In Nigeria, marriage annulment is allowed under certain circumstances. In this article, we will discuss what marriage annulment is, the grounds for annulment in Nigeria, and the steps involved in getting a marriage annulled.

What is Marriage Annulment?

Marriage annulment is the legal process of declaring a marriage null and void. Unlike divorce, where a marriage is dissolved, annulment nullifies the marriage, as if it never happened. Annulment is only allowed in certain circumstances, and it is different from divorce in many ways. For instance, in annulment, the couple is not considered to have been married in the first place.

Grounds for Annulment in Nigeria

Marriage annulment is only allowed under certain circumstances in Nigeria. The following are the grounds for annulment in Nigeria:

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1. Bigamy

If one of the parties was already married at the time of the marriage, the marriage is considered null and void.

2. Non-Consummation

If the marriage has not been consummated, it can be annulled. Non-consummation means that the couple has not had sexual intercourse.

3. Underage Marriage

If one or both parties are underage, the marriage can be annulled. In Nigeria, the legal age for marriage is 18, and anyone below that age is considered a minor.

4. Duress or Coercion

If either party was forced or coerced into the marriage, the marriage can be annulled. Duress or coercion means that one of the parties was threatened or forced to get married.

5. Mental Illness

If one of the parties is mentally ill, the marriage can be annulled. Mental illness means that the person is not capable of understanding the implications of getting married.

6. Fraud

If one of the parties was deceived into getting married, the marriage can be annulled. Fraud means that one of the parties was misled into getting married.

Steps to Annul a Marriage in Nigeria

If you want to annul your marriage in Nigeria, you will need to follow these steps:

1. File a Petition

The first step is to file a petition in court. You will need to provide the court with evidence of the grounds for annulment.

2. Serve the Other Party

Once you have filed the petition, you will need to serve the other party with a copy of the petition. This is to give them an opportunity to respond to the petition.

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3. Attend Court Sessions

Both parties will be required to attend court sessions. The court will hear evidence and make a decision on whether to grant the annulment.

4. Obtain a Decree of Nullity

If the court grants the annulment, you will be issued with a decree of nullity. This document declares that the marriage is null and void.

Conclusion

Marriage annulment is allowed in Nigeria under certain circumstances. If you want to annul your marriage, you will need to provide evidence of the grounds for annulment and follow the steps outlined in this article. Remember that marriage is a serious commitment, and it is important to think carefully before getting married.

FAQs

Q1. How long does it take to get a marriage annulled in Nigeria?

A1. The length of time it takes to get a marriage annulled in Nigeria depends on the complexity of the case. It can take several months or more.

Q2. Can I get a marriage annulled if my spouse is cheating on me?

A2. No, adultery is not grounds for marriage annulment in Nigeria. However, it may be grounds for divorce.

Q3. Can I get a marriage annulled if we have been married for a long time?

A3. Yes, if the grounds for annulment exist, you can get your marriage annulled, regardless of how long you have been married.

Q4. Do I need a lawyer to annul my marriage in Nigeria?

A4. It is recommended that you hire a lawyer to help you with the process of annulment. A lawyer can provide legal advice and help you navigate the legal system.

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Q5. What happens to property and assets after a marriage is annulled?

A5. The court will decide on how to divide property and assets after a marriage is annulled. The decision will depend on the individual circumstances of the case.