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Montana Annulment and Prohibited Marriage Laws

State laws dictate the grounds under which an annulment may be granted and which types of marriage are prohibited, such as marriage between close family members or where a previous marriage was not ended either through a divorce or death. In Montana, annulment and prohibited marriage laws are very similar to those of other states.

Annulments In Montana

In Montana, in order to obtain an annulment, you must be able to establish that you fall within one of the statutory exceptions that allows your marriage to be declared "invalid." Theses include:

  • Bigamy
  • Kinship
  • Mental or Physical Incapacity
  • Force, Duress or Fraud
  • Under Age (One or both of spouses is under age 16 or between 16 and 18 without parental consent.

Montana Prohibited Marriages

In Montana, certain types of marriages are prohibited. These include marrying your first cousin or other close family member such as a sibling or parent. In addition, you can't get married if you already have a spouse. You'll have to have a formal divorce first. Also, you have to be of legal age or you'll need parental permission.

Same-Sex Marriage

Same-sex marriage is now legal in the state of Montana. In 2014, a U.S. District Court judge ruled in favor of the freedom to marry in Montana. This decision was ratified on a federal level when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage is guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause in the landmark 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges decision.

The basics of Montana's annulment and prohibited marriage laws are listed in the following chart. See FindLaw's Marriage Law Overview section for additional articles.

Code Sections 26.04.010, 26.04.020, 130; 26.09.040
Grounds for Annulment Lacking consent (mental, alcohol, duress, fraud, force); no physical capacity to consummate; underage; prohibited.
Time Limits for Obtaining Annulment Mental infirmity, alcohol, drugs: Within one (1) yr. after knowledge; Force, duress, fraud: two (2) yrs. after knowledge; Physical incapacity: Party must not know at time of marriage and must bring within 4 yrs.; Underage: Until age of majority; Prohibited: Anytime prior to death of parties.
Legitimacy of Children Children born of invalid marriages are legitimate. The court may make orders about child custody and visitation, as well as child support.
Prohibited Marriages Previous marriage undissolved; between ancestor and descendant, brother and sister, first cousins (half or whole blood), uncle and niece, aunt and nephew.

Note: Montana marriage laws are constantly changing--contact a Montana family law attorney , or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

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