When Gov. Phil Murphy signed Senate Bill 427 this past Friday, New Jersey became only the second state to prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from marrying or entering into a civil union.
Previously, New Jersey minors ages 16 or 17 could get married with parental consent. Minors under the age of 16 could be married after obtaining parental consent and approval from a judge. According to the New Jersey Department of Health, more than 3,600 minors got married in New Jersey between 1995 and 2015.
Research has shown that young women married at 18 or younger suffer negative psychological, social, educational, and financial consequences.