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Can high schoolers marry in Japan?


High school students worldwide are known for being curious and adventurous, but how far can they go with their decisions? In Japan, the legal age of marriage is 18 years old, but some exceptions are allowed. This article aims to explore whether high schoolers can marry in Japan and the legalities surrounding it.

Defining High Schoolers

High schoolers in Japan typically range from ages 15 to 18, depending on the academic year. It is essential to note that the legal age of marriage in Japan is 18 years old. However, there are exceptional cases in which marriages involving high schoolers are allowed.

Japanese Snack Box

Parental Consent

One of the exceptions that allow high schoolers to marry in Japan is parental consent. If a high school student’s parents give their approval, they can get married as young as 16 years old. However, if one or both parents refuse, the marriage cannot take place.

Juvenile Court Approval

In cases where parents refuse to give their consent, high schoolers can still get married with approval from a juvenile court. The court determines whether the marriage is in the best interest of the minor and can grant approval despite parental objections.

Legal Requirements for Marriage

Whether a high schooler or an adult, there are legal requirements that must be met for a marriage to be valid in Japan. These include a marriage registration form, proof of identity and age, and a family register (koseki) among others.

Consequences of Marriage

Marriage involves significant responsibilities that might not be suitable for high schoolers. These include financial obligations, living arrangements, and making life-changing decisions such as starting a family. Therefore, getting married at a young age might have detrimental effects on a person’s education and future.

Child Marriage Statistics

According to data from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), over 37,000 underage girls got married in Japan between 2000 and 2015. Although this number has been decreasing over the years, child marriage remains an issue in the country.

Child Marriage Laws Worldwide

Japan is not alone in allowing child marriage under particular circumstances. Other countries such as Bangladesh, India, and Nigeria also have similar laws that permit underage marriages with parental consent or court approval.

Global Efforts Against Child Marriage

The United Nations has made efforts to end child marriage worldwide by creating initiatives such as the Global Programme to Accelerate Action to End Child Marriage. The program aims to end child marriage by 2030 through advocacy, research, and partnerships.

The Impact of Child Marriage on Girls

Child marriage disproportionately affects girls compared to boy children. Girls who get married at a young age face several challenges such as lack of education and career opportunities, domestic violence, and maternal mortality.

The Importance of Education

Education plays a critical role in ending child marriage by providing girls with knowledge about their rights and opportunities. Educating girls can help break the cycle of poverty that often leads to child marriages.


In conclusion, high schoolers can marry in Japan under certain circumstances such as parental consent or juvenile court approval. However, it is crucial to consider the consequences of child marriage on both parties involved. Efforts must be made globally to end child marriage by empowering girls through education and advocacy.

Can a 15 year old get married in Japan?

In order for someone under the age of 20 to get married, they need the consent of both their mother and father. However, once they are married, they can participate in legal proceedings even if they are still under the age of 20.

At what age can you marry in Japan?

According to the Japanese Civil Code, the minimum age for marriage is 18 for boys and 16 for girls. However, anyone under the age of 20 cannot get married in Japan without consent from their parents. Starting in 2022, the legal age for marriage will be raised to 18 for both boys and girls.

Do people get married at 16 in Japan?

Currently, individuals must be at least 20 years old to get married without needing their parents’ consent. However, with parental approval, males can marry from the age of 18, while females are allowed to marry as young as 16. This information was last reported on March 21, 2018.

Can high school students date in Japan?

It may seem ironic, but it is not uncommon for Japanese schools to have rules that forbid their students from having romantic relationships. The reasoning behind this is that students should prioritize their studies and school-approved extracurricular activities.

Can you live alone at 16 in Japan?

As of April 1st, 2022, the minimum age to rent a property is 18 years old, and individuals under that age must obtain parental consent. Additionally, there are certain documents that must be provided to demonstrate financial capability to pay rent.

Does Japan have a child limit?

A two-child policy is a rule set by the government that restricts families from having more than two children, or that limits government subsidies to only the first two children.

Moreover, child marriage can also have negative effects on a country’s economy. When girls get married at a young age, they are often forced to drop out of school and are unable to contribute to the workforce. This can lead to a loss of potential talent and skills that could have benefited the country’s economy in the long run.

Additionally, child marriage can perpetuate the cycle of poverty. When girls get married young, they are more likely to have children at a young age as well. This can make it difficult for them to pursue education or career opportunities which can limit their ability to break out of poverty.

It is important to recognize that child marriage is not just a legal issue but a social and cultural one as well. In some communities, child marriage is seen as an acceptable practice or even necessary for financial reasons. Addressing the root causes of child marriage requires a comprehensive approach that involves education, community engagement, and policy changes.

In conclusion, while high schoolers may legally marry in Japan under certain circumstances, it is crucial to consider the negative impacts of child marriage on both individuals and society as a whole. Efforts must be made globally to end this harmful practice and empower girls through education and advocacy. Only then can we ensure that every child has the opportunity to reach their full potential and live a fulfilling life.

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