Annulment vs Nullity

Bonjour!  Mabuhay!

We are still on the topic of annulment and a few days back, we touched on the Reformed Annulment Process recently announced by the Catholic Church.  The web is rich with information on this touchy subject and through diligent research, I discovered that Annulment per se and Nullity of Marriage are two different things.  I guess it pays that we know the difference, right?

So I am sharing with you what I gathered from the PS Law website (

Read on!

Declaration of Nullity of Marriage – applies to marriages that are void from the start.  Ibig sabihin nito, ang kasalang naganap ay “inexistent”; as if the marriage did not take place at all.

Kung ito ang case ng mga gustong magpa-annul, the petitioner must file a Petition for the Declaration of Absolute Nullity of Marriage.  In the Philippines, this is also referred to as “Annulment”.

Ano ang grounds for Declaration of Nullity of Marriage?

  1. Where there is an absence of an essential or formal requisite. (Art. 4, first paragraph, Family Code).
  2. Those enumerated in Art. 35.
    1. Minority (those contracted by any party below 18 years of age even with the consent of parents or guardians).
    2. Lack of authority of solemnizing officer (those solemnized by any person not legally authorized to perform marriages, unless such marriages were contracted with either or both parties believing in good faith that the solemnizing officer had the legal authority to do so).
    3. Absence of marriage license (except those exempt from license requirement).
    4. Bigamous or polygamous marriages (except in cases where there is declaration of presumptive death).
    5. Mistake in identity (those contracted through mistake of one contracting party as to the identity of the other).
    6. After securing a judgment of annulment or of absolute nullity of marriage, the parties, before entering into the subsequent marriage, failed to record with the appropriate registry the: (i) partition and distribute the properties of the first marriage; and (ii) delivery of the children’s presumptive legitime.
  3. Where one of the parties was psychologically incapacitated at the time of the celebration of the marriage (Art. 36).
  4. Incestuous marriages (Under Art. 37).
  5. Marriages void by reason of public policy (under Art. 38).

Annulment of Marriage – this applies to voidable marriages; these are valid marriages until annulled or set-aside by final judgment.

Ano ang grounds for Annulment of Voidable Marriages?

  • Lack of parental consent.  If a party was 18 years or over, but below 21, and the marriage was solemnized without the consent of the parents/guardian, unless upon reaching 21, such party freely cohabited with the other and both lived together as husband and wife.
  • Insanity.  Either party was of unsound mind, unless such party after coming to reason, freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife.
  • Fraud. The consent of either party was obtained by fraud, unless such party afterwards, with full knowledge of the facts constituting the fraud, freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife.
  • Force, intimidation or undue influence.  If the consent of either party was obtained by force, intimidation or undue influence, unless it having disappeared or ceased but such party freely cohabited with the other as husband and wife.
  • Impotency.  Either party was physically incapable of consummating the marriage with the other, and such incapacity continues and appears to be incurable.
  • Sexually Transmitted Disease.  If, at the time of marriage, either party was afflicted with a sexually-transmissible disease found to be serious and appears to be incurable.

Annulment can be a complicated subject to tackle when information are limited.  Of course, the best people to consult about this matter are lawyers and those that have already undergone an annulment process.

In my next post, let us explore how a CENOMAR would look like if the owner has been granted an annulment from his/her previous marriage.  Ang isang taong na-biyudo/biyuda o nagpa annul ng kasal ay makakakuha ba ng bagong kopya ng CENOMAR na magsasabing sya ay binata o dalaga nang muli?

Meantime, keeping copies of your CENOMAR and Marriage Certificate handy are as important as having a ready copy of your Birth Certificate.  You can order for copies at or by calling (02) 737-1111 and simply have the documents delivered to your home or office address.  For added convenience, they have set-up an online payment facility for a “one-stop processing” experience.  You will receive the copies of your CENOMAR and Marriage Certificate in two to three working days.

Your thoughts and questions are welcome here.  Sharing is caring!