TOMMY, They talk about you right here, the Law Review Article is even called Child Brides!Yawn Sheen ...... a 14 year old can't be legally married in the USA ..... YOU WOULD THINK A LAWYER WOULD KNOW THAT ...... but then again you aren't a lawyer are you ??<quoted text>
MASSACHUSETTS LAW UPDATES
FROM THE MASSACHUSETTS TRIAL COURT LAW LIBRARIES
In Massachusetts, under MGL c.207, s. 25, a person under eighteen cannot marry without parental consent . MASSACHUSETTS DOES NOT HAVE A LAW SPECIFYING THE MINIMUM AGE AT WHICH A PERSON CAN MARRY WITH A PARENTS CONSENT. The process requires court approval, so whether or not to authorize the marriage of a particular minor is within a judges discretion.
THE NOTION OF A MINIMUM AGE OF 14 FOR BOYS AND 12 FOR GIRLS COMES FROM AN 1854 CASE, PARTON V. HERVEY, 67 MASS. 119.
Presumably, the concept that the minimum age is sixteen for both males and females comes from that same notion, that a minor above the age of consent may have a valid marriage. Massachusetts does not have a general age of consent for all things (for example, consent to medical treatment or kidnapping are different). For sexual matters, though, sixteen is generally called the age of consent, because sex with a person under sixteen is prohibited by MGL c.265 s.23. And so some websites state that you can marry here with parental consent at sixteen, and without it at eighteen.
BUT JUST THE LAW DOES NOT LIST A MINIMUM AGE OF TWELVE, IT DOESN'T GIVE A MINIMUM AGE OF SIXTEEN EITHER.
The truth is both simpler and more murky. In Massachusetts, if a parent consents to a minor childs marriage, authorization must still be obtained from the Probate or District Court. The judge will use his or her discretion to determine if the marriage is in the childs best interest. AS FAR AS WE CAN DETERMINE, THERE IS NO MINIMUM AGE; THERE ALSO IS NO REQUIREMENT THAT THE JUDGE APPROVE ANY REQUEST. EACH CASE IS SIMPLY DECIDED ON ITS OWN MERITS.
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