Gwen Stefani: Why She Can’t Legally Get Her 14-Year Marriage To Gavin Rossdale Annulled – Lawyer Explains
Amid reports that Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani won’t walk down the aisle until she annuls her previous marriage, an expert tells us why it’s legally impossible.
It seems there’s a Gavin Rossdale-shaped roadblock in the way of Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton’s path to the altar. The couple is reportedly “ready to wed,” but Gwen, 50, is a dedicated Roman Catholic. Apparently, she won’t say “I do” to Blake until she annuls her previous marriage to Gavin, 54. While Gwen waits to hear back from the Vatican about her case, she shouldn’t expect a call from the State of California. “Gwen does not qualify for an annulment under California law,” Kelly Chang Rickert, a family lawyer based in California, tells HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “Her divorce is already final, so it is a non-issue legally anyway.”
Does this mean there’s no chance of Gwen getting an annulment? Yes and no. Since legally, she’s already finalized her split from Gavin, it’s not possible to legally get annulled. But, spiritually? “The Catholic Church has its own rules regarding annulments that Gwen would need to follow,” Kelly Chang Rickert tells HollywoodLife. “But to be clear, if the Church approves her annulment, it will not change her legal status as DIVORCED by the family court.” Gwen and Gavin were married from 2002 to 2016. The couple (who has three kids together: Kingston, 13, Zuma, 11, and Apollo, 5) split in 2015 and finalized the divorce a year later.
Here’s hoping that the Vatican joins the State of California in giving the thumbs up. Gwen and Blake, 43, are reportedly ready to take the next step in their relationship, according to PEOPLE, but they’ve hit a roadblock. Gwen, “who is a practicing Roman Catholic, hopes to have a church ceremony with the country star,” reports the publication. To have her marriage recognized by the Catholic church, she needs to have her prior relationship annulled. In March, she “began the formal [annulment] process,” according to US Weekly, who notes that Gwen’s religion “has always been extremely important to her.”
Blake is also “traditional,” a source told HollywoodLife, so when he does propose to Gwen (“it’s a matter of when, not if,” the source said), he will probably make a huge romantic gesture before getting down on one knee. Just don’t expect it anytime soon. “[Gwen’s] not in any huge rush and is letting Blake take the lead. And, to be honest, she is very happy with things exactly as they are. They are living in their new home together, and things couldn’t be more perfect.”