This brief outlines the key arguments for setting 18 as a minimum age of marriage:
- There is growing international consensus that a minimum age of marriage of 18 is critical to end child marriage.
- Setting the minimum age of marriage at 18 is an objective standard of maturity that prevents discrimination.
- A minimum age of 18 safeguards a child from marriage when they are not ready and lack the legal rights of an adult.
- Leaving a marriage is not always an option. We must ensure everyone is able to make meaningful decisions about marriage.
- Marriage before 18 has an economic impact on girls, their families, and their countries.