Annulment and Divorce

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Differences between annulment and Divorce

Do you want your marriage to end quickly, easily, and inexpensively? Do you immediately think of the annulment of your marriage because you discovered shortly after your marriage that the marriage was a big mistake? Do you want to avoid divorce proceedings if possible? Are you wondering whether and under what conditions you can get the annulment in Nepal?

Well, we have here all answers for you. But first, know what is annulment in marriage?

What is marriage annulment?

We have heard about Divorce in marriage but have we heard about annulment? The marriage annulment, in civil matters, is a sentence which states that a marriage was never valid and determines the marital status of the person. In marriage annulment, your marital status and records completely as if it has never happened. Our law allows for the marriage annulment on specific occasions. The result of declaring marriage annulment is to conclude that the marriage never occurred because the requirements to establish it were not met. In divorce, the existence of marriage is recognized and the couple separates for one of the causes recognized by law.

What are the differences between marriage annulment and divorce?

A divorce is the legal process of terminating a valid marriage that has been recognized both by law and by society. After divorce, the court gives both ex-husband and ex-wife the single status and therefore, the ability to marry again. In the case of divorce from a court in the United Kingdom and the United States, the court clearly states in the divorce paper, the Latin maxim divortium a vinculo matrimonii, or divorce from all the bonds of marriage.

When the marriage between two person is performed on the basis of the lie or fraud, then such marriage can be annulled in the court. Basically, if one person marries the other hiding some facts, then such marriage is called the fraud marriage. Therefore, the court has the right to annul such marriage.

The main differences between marriage annulment and divorce are as follows:

1. Validity of marriage

When you file for divorce, your marriage status will be valid and recognized by the law until you are formally separated and your marital relationship is dissolved by the court.

In marriage annulment, your marriage is nullified or dismissed from the date of the marriage and is not legally recognized.

2. Rights over property

When a spouse file for divorce, the wife has the right to claim on the property share of the husband.

In marriage annulment, the wife doesn’t have any right to claim for her property share.

3. Complaint and Petition

When you file for divorce, you have to file for petition clearly stating the cause for seeking the divorce.

In marriage annulment, the person files a complaint in the court against the other with whom he or she got married. The person files a complaint stating that he or she has been cheated, the other person has hidden some facts before marriage. Therefore, the person who has been cheated and has been the victim of such fraud marriage files a complaint in the court for the dismissal of the marriage.

4. Claim for compensation

In divorce, the spouse don’t get the right for claiming for the compensation.

In marriage annulment, the aggrieved party has the right to file for compensation. He or she has the right to file a complaint in the respective district court. After filing a complaint in the court, the law allows the aggrieved party or the sufferer to claim for the compensation for the loss, cheating, pain and the expenses of marriage with the concerned party (the person who has married by telling a lie or hiding the facts).

5. After effects

In divorce, there will always be a record of your marriage. Divorcing means that your marriage was recognized and valid but now it has been dissolved by the court.

In marriage annulment, all your marriage records will be removed or deleted as if the marriage has never happened. The consequence of a marriage annulment is a declaration that the marriage never existed.

Conditions for marriage annulment

The marriage can be annulled or dismissed by filing a complaint on the following conditions:

1. Marriage within relatives or blood kin

If you got married to your relatives or to your blood kin unknowingly or by certain mistakes. Then you can annul your marriage. Section 70 of Civil Code 2017 will grant the marriage annulment for your case.

2. Underage marriage or child marriage

The Nepal Government has clearly stated the age for marriage to be 20. However, if you are forced to get married under 20 years of age, if you were young or just a child when you were married by your parents. Then your marriage can be annulled.

3. Hiding the facts about serious or incurable diseases

If someone has HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), or Hepatitis B or such incurable or serious diseases and gets married hiding theses facts. And the victim or the aggrieved party after marriage finds out about his or her suffering from such diseases. Then that person or the victim can file a complaint for the marriage annulment. According to Section 71 of Civil Code 2017, the marriage will be annulled.

4. Impotency or lack of reproductive capability

If the person marries hiding the facts that he or she is impotent, incapable of sexual performance or has no reproductive capability (unable to give birth or unable to contribute for the birth of offspring). Then the victim of such marriage has the right to annul such marriage under Section 71 of Civil Code 2017.

5. Deformity

If the person has any deafness or if he or she is blind, if he or she is dumb and dull, mentally retarded or has been suffering from leprosy and gets married. Then the victim of such marriage can get the annulment under Section 71 of Civil Code 2017.

6. Bigamy

If the person has hidden the facts that he or she has already been married at the time of marriage, then such marriage is annulled by the court. The new Civil Code 2017 of Nepal has not given recognition to bigamy (marrying two person or having two spouses at the same time) or polygamy (having more than one spouse).

7. Pregnancy

If the woman hides the fact that she is already pregnant by other man at the time of marriage, then the husband has the right to file for marriage annulment.

8. Convicted of a crime

If the person has the previous history of committing heinous crime and had also been punished by law but he marries hiding this fact. Then such marriage can also be annulled upon the complaint of the victim or the aggrieved party under Section 71 of Civil Code 2017.


Marriage annulment is the act that is established with the purpose of preventing the fraud marriage. In Nepalese society, especially, people think that they can marry hiding the important facts. Once married, the spouse especially women can’t do anything and that they have to accept the marriage. But it is not so, women and even men if got married by the act of fraud by the other party, then he or she can file for the marriage annulment. The new constitution of Nepal has provided the law of marriage annulment so that the victim of such fraud marriage can get the appropriate justice.

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