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  #1  
Old Apr 23, '05, 5:05 pm
Reformed Rob Reformed Rob is offline
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Default How much would you pay for an annulment??

Yes, that may be a provocative title, but I don't mean at all to ask this question in that way. I'm just asking, and realizing it's things like this that make you Catholic's jobs as apologists and explainers so difficult.

Also, I hope and expect that all of you reading this (those who are married) would not pay anything for an anullment because you are all happily sacramentally married, and would neither want to nor have the option of an annulment. You want and plan to stay happily married, and that's awesome!

But on to my question....
Here's the situation as I understand it:

Some distant family members are Catholic (well, to some extent, obviously one of them is not too faithful, it appears). And the guy is married with children. Well, he wants to marry his "mistress" and not be with his wife. So, he goes to the Church, and after whatever time and discussions, he is told he will be granted an annulment for $22,000.

Ok, I realize that there are times and places for annulments. But to marry some woman you're having an affair with (presumably, I'm not there, but it's from first hand account, hearsay in other words, but still...), that's not a valid reason, is it? How can the original "marriage" be so easily annuled? I guess they could both just say "well, uh, we didn't really plan on having children and staying together forever, and it wasn't on our own free will that we even got married, so it was invalid."

And $22,000??? I know you shouldn't expect something for nothing, but that's kind of steep!!!

What are your thoughts on this matter, and the topic in general about "illicit annulments?" Even if this is not a case of one, surely there are some....

Rob
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Last edited by Reformed Rob; Apr 23, '05 at 5:07 pm. Reason: Edit a sentence
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  #2  
Old Apr 23, '05, 7:45 pm
puzzleannie puzzleannie is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reformed Rob
. So, he goes to the Church, and after whatever time and discussions, he is told he will be granted an annulment for $22,000.

Rob
he was not quoted this figure in any American diocese, the average is a few hundred to 2 or 3000, depending on how complicated the investigative process will be. remember it involves canon lawyers and professional services. An extremely complex case, involving two persons both with previous marriages, to spouses who also had several marriages, could be quite time consuming and expensive to investigate, but nothing like 22grand. The fees are lowered or waived in case of genuince need. In any case, it is a violation of canon law to "sell" an annulment. If he was told this it should be reported to the bishop at once, and if the bishop takes no action to the Vatican. I would guess the guy has no intention of getting an annulment or marrying the mistress, and is using the cost aspect as an excuse. by the way, there is no such thing as an annulment. If the investigation of the marriage tribunal determines that the conditions required for a valid marriage and consent were not present at the time of the marriage, it will issue a decree of nullity. The fee is not for the decree, but for the investigation and paperword that is entailed in ascertaining the facts.
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  #3  
Old Apr 23, '05, 9:46 pm
JimG JimG is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Sounds like a wild story to me. If such a story could be proven, I would take it to the Bishop or the Apostolic Nuncio; and heads would roll at the tribunal.
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  #4  
Old Apr 23, '05, 9:57 pm
Dr. Bombay Dr. Bombay is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Sounds like another Jack Chick tract to me.

"...distant family members..."
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  #5  
Old Apr 23, '05, 10:04 pm
Faustina Faustina is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

In our diocese, annulments cost nothing. When we first became a diocese 15 years ago, the bishop decided there would be no charge for annulments. I was granted an annulment 4 years and did not pay one cent. I realize I am very fortunate and this is unusual.

The case in point...that sounds a bit fishy. Someone is not understanding the process or they misheard something.
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  #6  
Old Apr 24, '05, 12:05 pm
thann thann is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Annulments are not that costly, and often the fees will be waived or reduced to a token amount. I guarantee that someone with an axe to grind made up that figure of $22,000.

'thann
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  #7  
Old Apr 24, '05, 12:17 pm
Reformed Rob Reformed Rob is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Bombay
Sounds like another Jack Chick tract to me.

"...distant family members..."
Yeah, I agree, and I try to take such stories with a spoonful of salt, then come here for a spoonful of sugar (because it helps the medicine go down, the medicine go down).

Puzzle Annie, thanks for your analysis and comments. I really don't know the people, they are very extended family and a couple states away. But if the sacrament of marriage was handled brutishly, or even incontinently (read Aristotle, Nichomanchean Ethics) by Judas' in the Church, then they either need to repent or be punished. It may be that nothing shady occured, that it was a valid annulment (sorry, I used the "a" word!!), and all is well (except for the sin, and the children and the wife and the Church's witness to the world).

So, if I were to gather some information to present to the proper Dioscese, where would I start? Keep in mind that I'm not Catholic, but that's probably going to change pretty soon. I know I keep saying that, but my pastor refuses to excommunicate me, still clinging to some hope, but I keep learning more about the Catholic faith and things.

I know I need names, investigating parties, background, and I better be up on the Canon Law regarding marriage and annulments. Can anyone help me on that? Thanks

Rob

A robin feathering his nest
Has very little time to rest
While gathering his
Bits of twine and twig

Though quite intent in his pursuit
He has a merry tune to toot
He knows a song
Will move the job along

For a...
Spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down
In a most delightful way

You know... -- Mary Poppins!!
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  #8  
Old Apr 24, '05, 12:34 pm
Reformed Rob Reformed Rob is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by thann
Annulments are not that costly, and often the fees will be waived or reduced to a token amount. I guarantee that someone with an axe to grind made up that figure of $22,000.

'thann
Yeah, I would not be a bit surprised if a bit of elaboration occured somewhere between the events and my hearing about it through the oral teachings of at least 2 parties of anti-Catholics!

Nonetheless, I may just contact the dioscese, with the permission of the closest to the actual parties that I can obtain (family things) and see if I can get clearer details.

This is the second marriage related thing that has come up in the past couple months. The other is much closer to where I live, but it's none of my business, and I don't like to be viewed as a snooper. But I'm getting tired of this, so many people who know nothing of the Church's reasons or practices just accept everything they hear in the worst possible light. grrrr.

There's no "Catholic Mafia" that's gonna come after me if I get close to uncovering some major annulment conspiracy ring is there? Oh yeah, like you would tell me if there was......

Rob
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  #9  
Old Apr 24, '05, 3:53 pm
Dr. Bombay Dr. Bombay is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reformed Rob
There's no "Catholic Mafia" that's gonna come after me if I get close to uncovering some major annulment conspiracy ring is there? Oh yeah, like you would tell me if there was......

Rob
Look out, people! He's on to us!

I'll start shredding the evidence. Send the Russian to take care of our problem.

The crow flies at midnight. **wink wink**
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  #10  
Old Apr 25, '05, 7:36 am
Lurch104 Lurch104 is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

My brother in law is currently going through this process in our diocese. The diocese charges $500, the parish pays $250 and the family pays $250. The entire fee is waived if the person asking for the annulment states they cannot afford the fee.
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  #11  
Old Apr 25, '05, 7:37 am
LoneRanger LoneRanger is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

How bad do you want to remain in your church and remarry?
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  #12  
Old Apr 25, '05, 8:51 am
btritone btritone is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

I cannot marry my fiance because she believes that an annullment from her x is just another way of the church making money, she rather get married in the episcapal church(spelling sorry!!) but I do not want too , so needless to say, we have to wait for her x spouse to pass away. I am very saddened by this and may re consider marrying her because my faith is very important to me. I just think that she is afraid to talk to her x about it, that it may hurt his feelings. She is the type that likes to avoid conflict, but it does not seem like she is avoiding it with me!!! any advice? I know this is not an advice column, but I am very sad at this point. I even told her that I would pay for it too!!
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  #13  
Old Apr 25, '05, 9:06 am
Catholic2003 Catholic2003 is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by btritone
I cannot marry my fiance because she believes that an annullment from her x is just another way of the church making money, she rather get married in the episcapal church(spelling sorry!!) but I do not want too , so needless to say, we have to wait for her x spouse to pass away. I am very saddened by this and may re consider marrying her because my faith is very important to me. I just think that she is afraid to talk to her x about it, that it may hurt his feelings. She is the type that likes to avoid conflict, but it does not seem like she is avoiding it with me!!! any advice? I know this is not an advice column, but I am very sad at this point. I even told her that I would pay for it too!!
You (actually she) could consider relocating to one of the dioceses that do not charge for annulments.
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  #14  
Old Apr 25, '05, 9:20 am
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Brendan Brendan is offline
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Default Re: How much would you pay for an annulment??

Quote:
Originally Posted by btritone
I cannot marry my fiance because she believes that an annullment from her x is just another way of the church making money,

Any fee that the Church charges for an investigation into an Annulment doesn't come close to covering the actual charges.

Any diocese will gladly give you information on it's Tribunals budget.

You will see that they are a net cost to the diocese, not a profit center.

And as a point of clarification, the fees are to cover part of the cost of the investigation. Paying this fee does not 'buy an annulment'. The tribunal will rule on the merits of the case.

It's like the court fees cost when one uses the court system. Someone isn't buying a verdict when they pay case filing fees.
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