Separated and Divorced
Frequently asked questions about Annulments:
What is an annulment?
The term “annulment” is a misnomer because the Church does not undo or erase a marriage bond. Rather the Church issues declarations of nullity when it discovers that the parties were not truly joined by God
and hence a full spiritual sacramental marriage as understood by the Church was not present.
Why should I get a Declaration of Nullity?
People who have received a declaration of nullity have expressed feelings of relief, wholeness and healing as a result of the process. For those who have remarried outside of the Church, a Declaration of Nullity provides the opportunity to exercise all the privileges, receive the grace the sacraments offer and re-establish a closer bond with the community. This is a process of understanding, healing, and of making the justice and compassion of God more available to the divorced person.
How can I learn about a Declaration of Nullity?
You may approach your pastor, priest/deacon or the layperson in your parish who has been trained in the process. If you encounter difficulties at your own parish, you may seek a referral directly from the Tribunal.
How long does the marriage nullity process usually take?
The length of time varies from diocese to diocese, depending on the number of pending petitions, the cooperation of involved parties and the specific circumstances.
Can anybody petition?
All have a right to petition. Whether that petition can be granted depends on the existence of recognized grounds for nullity and proof of same.
For more information regarding annulments, please contact the Metropolitan Tribunal for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Tel: (213) 637-7245