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The Exchange

N.H. Debates: How Young Is Too Young To Get Married?

Robert Chealb via Flickr

How young is too young to get married and who decides?  The current legal age in New Hampshire is thirteen for girls and fourteen for boys.  Now, as the legislature debates several bills to change this, we examine the legal, cultural, and political issues involved. 


Jacalyn Cilley - Democratic Representative from Barrington. She has sponsored bills that set the age to marry at 16 years. Her efforts to set the age limit at 18 failed last year but she plans to revive that proposal. 

Dan Itse -  Republican Representative from Fremont. He is vicechairman of the Children and Family Law Committee.

Leah Plunkett -  Associate professor of legal skills and member of the leadership team at UNH School of Law; also fellow with the Youth & Media team at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. She is also founder of the Youth Law Project at New Hampshire Legal Assistance.