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Supreme Court overturns precedent to permit annulment of marriage post-divorce – koreatimes

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Supreme Court Breaks Precedent: Marriage Can Be Annulled Even After Divorce

In a groundbreaking decision, the Supreme Court of South Korea has ruled that a marriage can be annulled even after it ends in divorce under special circumstances. This decision marks a significant departure from the court’s previous precedent set 40 years ago.

The court’s new ruling came in response to a lawsuit filed by a woman who divorced her husband after three years of marriage. She claimed that the marriage was registered without her actual agreement and sought to have it annulled. Despite losing the initial ruling, the Supreme Court reversed the decision and sent the case back to the Seoul Family Court.

The court stated that even after a divorce, the interest in seeking confirmation of the nullity of the marriage can be recognized. This ruling emphasizes that annulment can be an effective and appropriate means to resolve all marital disputes at once.

The decision is based on the Civil Act’s Article 815, which stipulates that a marriage is null and void if there is no agreement to marry between the parties. The Supreme Court’s previous precedent, set in 1984, had maintained that the marriage of a divorced couple cannot be annulled afterward due to a lack of practical benefits.

This ruling has significant implications for future cases involving annulment of marriages in South Korea. It highlights the court’s willingness to adapt and evolve its legal interpretations to better serve the needs of individuals seeking justice in marital disputes.

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