What to do if my “husband” was already married when we wedandI never obtained an annulment after I left him?

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What to do if my “husband” was already married when we wedandI never obtained an annulment after I left him?

I was young when I married a man who already had a wife. I found out 2month later and I walked out. It’s 40 years later and I consider that I have never been married. But Inever went for annulment. What can I do? We only lived together for 1 month and I never used his last name.

Asked on February 21, 2011 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Under New York Law there are some marriages that are considered void from the start.  They are not recognized as valid marriages at all and can never be recognized as such.  Your case is one of those cases.  And although such a marriage is considered void, it is necessary commence a legal action to obtain an annulment so that the legal records are set straight.Under new York Domestic Relations Law, Article 9 Section 140, you may bring an action to declare the marriage a nullity.  You should do this just for legalities.  You do not want him showing up to claim some inheritance from your family.  He doesn't deserve it.  Good luck to you.


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