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The Marriage and Civil Partnership (Minimum Age) Bill [HL] is a private member’s bill introduced by Baroness Tonge (Independent Liberal Democrat). It seeks to raise the minimum age of consent to marriage or civil partnership from 16 to 18. It further seeks to amend the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 to create an offence of “causing” a person under the age of 18 to enter into a marriage or civil partnership. As well as setting out the changes sought by the Bill, this briefing points to similar proposals considered by the House of Commons Committee on the Age of Majority in 1967 and also touches upon the history of the law of the minimum age of marriage.


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