New Florida law outlaws marriage under age seventeen

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- A new Florida law aims to help prevent child marriages.

According to the law, which went into effect Sunday, anyone under 17 will not be allowed to marry. Anyone marrying a 17-year-old must be no more than two years older, while minors will need parental consent.

The old law allowed 16- and 17-year-olds to marry with the consent of both sets of parents. There was no minimum age if a judge approved and a pregnancy was involved.

The legislation was inspired by the case of Sherry Johnson, who reportedly was forced to marry her adult rapist at the age of 11 after giving birth to their child.

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