You have been divorced. You went through the arduous process. Perhaps, you and your now ex-spouse even duked it out in court. You reached a settlement agreement or the judge made rulings on child custody and dividing your property and debts. Now tempers have cooled. You are talking civilly to one another, maybe even went on a date. Cupid's arrows are flying. You have decided to get back together. It's as easy as simply getting remarried right? Not necessarily.
First of all consider the fact that by some statistics, the rate of divorce in second marriages is in the neighborhood of sixty percent. Allegorically speaking from practicing family law for years, I can say that the rate of divorce for second marriages to the same person tends to be even higher. However, hope springs eternal. Nevertheless, remarriage may not be the best option.
A little used provision of Kentucky law actually allows a couple who wish to get back together to annul their divorce. This action actually voids the divorce decree and any separation agreement. The effect is that the divorce decree or separation agreement has no legal effect as though it never happened. That means that anything that was marital property before the divorce is once again marital property. It may also be used to prevent a lapse in coverage of health insurance since most employer plans will automatically drop a former spouse. If the divorce is annulled, the insurer should recover the spouse and, arguably, cover the period of any lapse assuming premiums were appropriately paid for family plan coverage.
If you choose not to annul the divorce, get remarried and then realize that you just cannot make the marriage work for a second time it could have a major effect on your second divorce. The property that was divided in the first divorce remains each party's separate non-marital property. Remember non-marital property includes property owned prior to the marriage, even a second marriage to the same person. This may or may not simplify the second divorce, but it usually comes as a surprise to at least one of the parties who assumed everything went back to being marital property by virtue of the marriage ceremony.
These are not easy issues to handle. When Cupid's arrows start flying, you might be wise to get out of the way.
Photo courtesy of Hans Splinter
Labels: annula divorce, annulment, dating, divorce, divorce decree, divorce lawyer, ex husband, ex wife, family law, kentucky, marital property, non-marital property