annulment ([schwa]-n[schwa]l-m[schwa]nt), n.

1. The act of nullifying or making void; VOIDANCE.

2. A judicial or ecclesiastical declaration that a marriage is void. • An annulment establishes that the marital status never existed. So annulment and dissolution of marriage (or divorce) are fundamentally different: an annulment renders a marriage void from the beginning, while dissolution of marriage terminates the marriage as of the date of the judgment of dissolution. Although a marriage terminated by annulment is considered never to have occurred, in most states today a child born during the marriage is not considered illegitimate after the annulment. Cf. DI-VORCE. [Cases: Marriage 56. C.J.S. Marriage § 63.]

3. A rescission. See RESCIND(3). — annul ([schwa]-n[schwa]l), vb.