Ah, young love in the First State. We all remember our first crushes and early romances, but if your relationship is more serious, how young is too young to get married? In Delaware, as with most states, the answer depends on whether or not your parents consent. So here is a brief overview of marriage age requirements in Delaware.
Delaware Marriage Age Requirement Laws
In Delaware, two (2) people who are each at least 18 years old can get married. If you are at least 16, but under 18, you will need the consent of a parent or guardian.
Essentially this means minors (under the age of 18) must obtain parental consent before they may legally tie the knot. Although couples seldom get married before they reach the age of majority, it is made available primarily to allow pregnant minors to marry. Marriage age limits are also intended to protect young people from being coerced into marriage, but also to ensure that individuals have the maturity required for such a commitment.
Anyone under guardianship cannot marry without the guardian’s written consent. Delaware also does not allow marriage between most close relatives. You cannot marry a parent, grandparent, sister, brother, child, grandchild, niece, nephew, aunt or uncle.
You cannot marry if either of you is currently married to someone else, or if either of you is married to someone else. The law requires that both parties be of sound mind.
Marriage License Requirements
You will need a marriage license, but you do not need blood tests, and there is no waiting period.
Do I Need to Consult with an Attorney Prior to Getting Married?
Marriage rarely requires the help of a lawyer, unless there are unusual circumstances involved. And if you plan to sign a prenuptial agreement , it is a good idea to consult an attorney first.
Marriage age requirement laws are in the following table. See State Laws on Marriage for a comparison.
|Code Section||Tit. 13 §123|
|Minimum Age With Parental Consent||
Male: 18; Female: 18
|Minimum Age Without Parental Consent||
Male: 18; Female: 18
|Added Requirements for Underage Marriage||
Minors under minimum age may obtain license in case of pregnancy or birth of child with medical certification.
Note: Delaware marriage laws are constantly changing--contact a Delaware family law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
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Delaware Marriage Age Requirements Laws: Related Resources
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