HB499 (2017) Detail

Relative to the age at which certain persons may marry.



9Mar2017... 0536h

9Mar2017... 0810h







AN ACT relative to the age at which persons may marry.


SPONSORS: Rep. Cilley, Straf. 4; Rep. Rosenwald, Hills. 30; Rep. Berrien, Rock. 18; Rep. Gile, Merr. 27; Rep. Read, Rock. 17; Sen. Fuller Clark, Dist 21; Sen. D'Allesandro, Dist 20; Sen. Watters, Dist 4


COMMITTEE: Children and Family Law






This bill requires individuals to be at least 18 years of age to marry.

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

8Mar2017... 0536h

9Mar2017... 0810h 17-0450





In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Seventeen


AN ACT relative to the age at which persons may marry.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  Marriageable; Age of Consent.  Amend RSA 457:4 and 457:5 to read as follows:

457:4  Marriageable.  [No male below the age of 14 years and no female below the age of 13 years shall be capable of contracting a valid marriage that is entered into by one male and one female, and all marriages contracted by such persons shall be null and void.] No male below the age of 18 and no female below the age of 18 shall be capable of contracting a valid marriage [between persons of the same gender], and all marriages contracted by such persons shall be null and void.  

457:5  Of Consent.  The age of consent shall be in the male and in the female, 18 years.  Any marriage contracted by a person below the age of consent[, except as hereinafter provided, may in the discretion of the superior court be annulled at the suit of the party who at the time of contracting such marriage was below the age of consent, or at the suit of his or her parent or guardian, unless such party after arriving at such age shall have confirmed the marriage] shall be null and void; provided that any marriage recognized as valid in the state prior to the effective date of this section and RSA 457:4 shall continue to be recognized as valid on or after the effective date of this section.  

2  Marriage; Prohibitions.  Amend RSA 457:8 to read as follows:

457:8  Prohibitions.  No town clerk shall issue any certificate for the marriage of any person below the age of consent, and no magistrate or minister of religion shall solemnize the marriage of any such person, if such clerk, magistrate or minister knows or has reasonable cause to believe that such person is below such age[, unless permission for such marriage has been given under this subdivision].  No magistrate or minister of religion shall solemnize any marriage by proxy.

3  Marriage Registration Form; Reference to Waiver for Age Removed.  Amend RSA 5-C:41, III to read as follows:

III.  The clerk of the town or city shall complete the following statistical and legal information on the marriage application worksheet for both the bride and groom with information supplied by the bride and groom: the number which represents of the currently intended marriage; if previously married, whether a civil annulment occurred or the marriage ended by death or divorce; the date of civil annulment or that the last marriage ended; their race and ancestry; their level of education; [any waivers presented by the groom or the bride, either for time or age pursuant to RSA 457:4 through RSA 457:9 or RSA 457:26 and RSA 457:27;] whether proof of age of the bride and groom was demonstrated using identification with photograph; if applicable, the divorce decree; and, if applicable, the death record of the former spouse.

4  Powers and Duties of Guardians of Minors; Reference Change.  Amend RSA 463:12, III(e) to read as follows:

(e)  Consent to the [marriage or] adoption of the minor as provided in RSA 170-B:5 [and RSA 457:6].

5  Repeal.  The following are repealed:

I.  RSA 5-C:41, XIV, relative to the marriage registration form for a minor.

II.  RSA 5-C:45, relative to marriage by minors.

III.  RSA 457:6, relative to petition by party under age.

IV.  RSA 457:7, relative to permission for minor to marry.

V.  RSA 457:28, relative to procedure.

VI.  RSA 457:28-b, relative to destruction of records related to petition.

VII.  RSA 547:3, II(c), relative to probate court jurisdiction over waivers for marriage of minors.

6  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2018.


HB499 at GenCourtMobile

Action Dates

Date Body Type
Jan. 24, 2017 House Hearing
Feb. 22, 2017 House Exec Session
March 8, 2017 House Floor Vote

Bill Text Revisions

HB499 Revision: 1004 Date: March 10, 2017, 11:14 a.m.
HB499 Revision: 1005 Date: Jan. 27, 2017, 8:42 a.m.


March 9, 2017: Indefinitely Postpone (Rep. Spillane): MA RC 179-168 03/09/2017 HJ 10 P. 60

March 9, 2017: FLAM # 2017-0810h (Rep. Walz): AA VV 03/09/2017 HJ 10 P. 59

March 9, 2017: Amendment # 2017-0536h: AA VV 03/09/2017 HJ 10 P. 58

March 8, 2017: Removed from Consent (Rep. Bates) 03/08/2017 HJ 9 P. 7

March 8, 2017: Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2017-0536h (NT) for 03/08/2017 (Vote 11-0; CC) HC 14 P. 4

Feb. 22, 2017: Executive Session: 02/22/2017 LOB 206

Feb. 21, 2017: Subcommittee Work Session: 02/21/2017 09:00 AM LOB 206

Jan. 31, 2017: ==CANCELLED== Executive Session: 01/31/2017 10:00 AM LOB 206

Jan. 24, 2017: Public Hearing: 01/24/2017 02:00 PM LOB 206

Jan. 5, 2017: Introduced 01/05/2017 and referred to Children and Family Law HJ 3 P. 15