Divorce is technically not the only means of ending a marriage. Under select circumstances, couples can seek an annulment, in which their union is deemed invalid. While many couples fail to even consider annulment as an option, it can hold considerable advantages for qualifying couples. We’re here to clear up the confusion; read on to learn more:

Why Annulment?

In a financial sense, annulment can prove preferable simply because it removes the need for alimony. Because the marriage is declared nonexistent, annulment eliminates any claim to spousal maintenance. Child support, however, could be available — just as it could if unmarried parents separate.

With property division, courts attempt to trace all assets back to their origins. If property cannot be divided in this manner, courts should strive for fair division while attempting to place spouses in the relative position they occupied prior to their invalid marriage.

Some spouses prefer annulment on a purely emotional level. Because annulments underscore that the marriage was never valid in the first place, they can offer a valuable sense of closure to those who feel they are not ‘at fault’ for the marriage’s demise.

When Divorce Is Preferable

The downside of seeking an annulment? It may require extensive documentation — well beyond that required for divorce. Even if you believe you qualify for an annulment, you may struggle to prove your eligibility in court. While the logistics of divorce can be complicated, qualification standards alone may make dissolution far simpler than annulment. Ultimately, there is no easy solution; you’ll want to work with a trusted attorney to determine which approach works best under your unique circumstances.

Whether you ultimately opt for annulment or divorce, you can benefit from strong legal representation. Reach out at your earliest convenience to learn more about our approach to annulment and divorce.

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Photo of Cynthia Brown Cynthia Brown

Cynthia Brown is a founding partner with the Brown Law Offices, P.A. She is an honors graduate of the University of South Dakota and William Mitchell College of Law. Cynthia was admitted to practice in 1998.

After graduating from law school, Cynthia served…

Cynthia Brown is a founding partner with the Brown Law Offices, P.A. She is an honors graduate of the University of South Dakota and William Mitchell College of Law. Cynthia was admitted to practice in 1998.

After graduating from law school, Cynthia served as the law clerk to the Honorable Timothy R. Bloomquist, retired Chief Judge of Minnesota’s Tenth Judicial District. Upon completing her clerkship, Cynthia practiced with a well-known firm in Cambridge, Minnesota. She founded the Brown Law Offices, P.A. in 2003.

Cynthia has handled a wide variety of family law matters throughout the Twin Cities, and greater Minnesota, including divorce, custody, child protective services, orders for protection and harassment restraining orders. Many of her clients have also asked her to provide guidance concerning their estate planning needs.

Early in her career, Cynthia served as a prosecutor, public defender and criminal investigator. In addition to her family practice, Cynthia routinely represents clients facing criminal charges such as DWI, assault, theft and criminal sexual misconduct.

Cynthia founded the Amigos de Guatemala Foundation in 2007. She is a former Board Member and President of the Foundation, which provided educational, health and financial resources to underprivileged Guatemalan citizens. Her interest in serving the impoverished began with a medical mission trip to Honduras in 1994.

When she is not practicing law, Cynthia enjoys scrap-booking, soap-making, ATV riding and spending time with family.


Areas of Practice
  • Divorce
  • Custody
  • Child Protective Services
  • Restraining Orders
  • Criminal Defense
  • Estate Planning
Bar Admission
  • Minnesota State Bar, 1998
Education
  • William Mitchell College of Law, 1998
  • University of South Dakota, 1995
Joined Firm
  • 2003
Professional Associations & Activities
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Presenter, Various CLE Courses
  • Panel Attorney, Anoka County County Family Law Clinic
  • Monthly Columnist, Minnesota Lawyer Newspaper
  • Author, Family Law Forum
  • Author, Divorce Magazine