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Family law in Connecticut: Can cousins marry?

The old adage, kissin' cousins, can be taken quite literally in some states, though less so in others. Despite what people think about the moral aspects of first cousins marrying, one of the states that allows such marriages under family law rules is Connecticut. Most of the concerns center around genetics with the assumption that cousins may share similar DNA, which could possibly mean possible developmental problems should they have children.

However, research shows that kids of first cousins have between a 4 and 6 percent chance of having developmental problems. That number is between 2 and 3 percent of kids of people who aren't at all related. Second cousins, however, can legally marry in every state.

Many cultures, like the Asian culture, actually encourage first cousins to marry to keep familial relationships strong. Some states, like Utah, Wisconsin and Maine, allow first cousins to marry if they don't plan on having any children and are over a certain age. There are certain states that allow half or adoptive cousins to marry and others -- like Louisiana and Minnesota -- that nix these marriages altogether.

There are many areas in life in which family law rules come into play, and marriage is just one of them. Connecticut residents who have questions regarding the legal ramifications of marriage may find answers by seeking legal counsel. A lawyer experienced in family law will know the laws of his or her state and may be able to provide guidance when it comes to possible life-changing situations like marriage. 


Source:, "What Are the Cousin Marriage Laws in Your State?", Sheri Stritof, Accessed on April 6, 2018

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