Legal Information: North Carolina


April 23, 2021

What are the reasons I can get an annulment?

Although many people believe that an annulment is based on the length of the marriage, how long the couple has been married is not the determining factor about whether or not a spouse can get an annulment.

In North Carolina, a marriage can be annulled (deemed void) when:

  • spouses are related more closely (“nearer of kin”) than first cousins, such as a marriage between siblings;
  • spouses are “double first cousins,” which means that two brothers married two sisters and they each had children – those children are double first cousins;
  • one of the spouses was under 16 years of age at the time of the marriage (unless the minor was a female and she was pregnant or a child was born to the parties);
  • one of the spouses was legally married at the time of the current marriage;
  • either one of the spouses was physically impotent at the time of the marriage; or
  • one of the spouses was incompetent or incapable of consenting to the marriage.1

1 N.C.G.S. § 51-3

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