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Georgia Marriage Laws

Official Code of Georgia Annotated 19-3-2 - Who may contract marriage; emancipation requirement; minimum age for marriage

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Who may contract marriage; emancipation requirement; minimum age for marriage

(a) To be able to contract marriage, a person must: (1) Be of sound mind; (2) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this Code section, be at least 18 years of age; (3) Have no living spouse of a previous undissolved marriage. The dissolution of a previous marriage in divorce proceedings must be affirmatively established and will not be presumed. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to affect the legitimacy of children; and (4) Not be related to the prospective spouse by blood or marriage within the prohibited degrees. (b) If either applicant for marriage is 17 years of age, documentary proof that such applicant was emancipated by operation of law or pursuant to a petition filed with the court as provided in Article 10 of Chapter 11 of Title 15 shall be required before a license may be issued pursuant to Article 2 of this chapter; provided, in addition, that: (1) If the emancipation was pursuant to a petition filed with the court, a certified copy of the order providing for the emancipation shall be provided as documentary proof; (2) At least 15 days shall have passed since such emancipation shall have occurred by operation of law or pursuant to a petition filed with the court; (3) The older party to the marriage contract shall not be more than four years older than the younger party to the marriage contract; and (4) Each party to the marriage contract who is 17 years of age shall present a certificate of completion of premarital education as provided under Code Section 19-3-30.1. (c) No license provided for under Article 2 of this chapter shall be issued for the marriage of any party who is under 17 years of age.

(Orig. Code 1863, § 1654; Code 1868, § 1698; Code 1873, § 1699; Code 1882, § 1699; Civil Code 1895, § 2412; Civil Code 1910, § 2931; Code 1933, § 53-102; Ga. L. 1957, p. 83, § 1; Ga. L. 1962, p. 138, § 1; Ga. L. 1963, p. 485, § 1; Ga. L. 1965, p. 335, § 1; Ga. L. 1965, p. 500, § 1; Ga. L. 1976, p. 1719, § 1; Ga. L. 1979, p. 872, § 1; Ga. L. 1999, p. 81, § 19; Ga. L. 2006, p. 141, § 6A/HB 847; Ga. L. 2019, p. 558, § 1-1/HB 228.)

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