New Laws Regarding Under-Age Marriages Will See Additional Rights For Women

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Under 18- marriage laws have been reinstated in the Kingdom, and they’re back FULL- force. Many authorities in Saudi Arabia are now looking more in-depth into the marriage of minors in the Kingdom, and adding a few new rules that give women more rights in this area.

What are these new laws?

There is no legal marriage contract that could ever be given to a minor girl in court, otherwise certain people can be punished, according to the ad-hoc inter- ministerial committee. However, as reported by Gulf News, the consent of a girl and her mother are one of the most important basis to determine wether or not the girl fully consents to the marriage. 

Other new laws include:

  • All marriage contracts under the majority age of marriage (18) must complete a list of requirements by the authorities first 
  • … this will include the ban of health ministries in taking premarital checkups on underage brides without a judge’s approval
  • The marriage should be fully consented by the girl, verbally 
  • The marriage shouldn’t put the ‘supposed bride’ in a life-at-risk situation 
  • The mother’s opinion will also play a big role 
  • The application needs to have medical reports (physical and mental) from experts and doctors to see that she’d have no history of abuse or trauma 
  • A social expert from the official courts should also, reportedly, provide a psychological compatibility report on the future husband and wife 

and that’s not all!

This doesn’t just apply to Saudi women but also non-Saudi girls 

Any minor girl looking to wed so young in the Kingdom has to go through the list of requirements (stated above) in order to even be considered. The committee also recommends to prepare these girls on more knowledge about marriages and ‘family responsibilities.’

Saudi women cannot be forced into marriages, and they should choose their husbands wisely 

As stated by the committee, Saudi girls and women should not be held against their will to marry somebody that they do not want. 

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