Married At Sixteen…


Caraline Shaheen, Paperclip Writer/Staff

On January 1st, 2019 New Hampshire state representatives voted to raise the minimum marriage age from 13 for girls and 14 for boys, to 16 years old. The age was raised because of 19-year-old, newly elected New Hampshire state representative, Cassie Levesque. Even though the age was just changed, Levesque is still pushing to get it pushed even further to 18 years old.

Levesque was elected in 2018 as New Hampshire’s youngest state representative. She has been pushing for the marriage age to be changed for years and succeeded at the beginning of this year, but not in the way she thought. Levesque wanted to change the legal age to 18 years old but other representatives disagreed and made a compromise of 16 instead of 18 years old.

Some other states are ahead of New Hampshire. In Texas, both participants in the marriage must be 18 years of age. The law also states that the couple must consent to the marriage, live together as a married couple, and they must inform people of their marriage, which includes introducing themselves as a married couple and “doing something to make people believe they’re married, like signing credit applications as a married couple.”.

In California, you also must be 18 to get hitched. They’re marriage law also states that the individuals cannot be already married to each other or others and the couple must bring valid forms of ID to the ceremony.

As of now, Cassie Levesque is still pushing for the law to change up to adulthood and beyond, but the New Hampshire minimum marriage age will stay the same.