Home PARENTING Custody Issues Jayla Cooper, terminally ill 9 year old, weds 7 year old Jose...

Jayla Cooper, terminally ill 9 year old, weds 7 year old Jose Griggs in friendship marriage: should this marriage be annulled?

9 year old weds 7 year old

Touching little story coming out of Southlake Texas. A young girl with leukemia with a few weeks left to live, gets her dying wish when her seven year old friend agrees to be her “husband.” The couple have entered into a “friendship marriage.”

The two kids met a couple of years back when they were both patients at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas, according to an article on Bitten and Bound.

This is very interesting and sent me flying for my treatise on annulments in New York. I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings at a time like this, obviously, but such a marriage between such young children is only symbolic and would have no legal significance. That is because, certainly in New York and I believe in Texas as well, a marriage by children under the age of 14 is usually voidable. In New York to get married under the age of 18, a person would require parental consent, and sometimes judicial consent (under age 16). But ages 14 and under, marriage is not permitted even with parental consent, as a general rule.

However, if the court were persuaded that the couple understood the legalities and responsibilities of the marriage, it might allow the marriage to continue even if they are under age. So this marriage is not necessarily “void ab initio” like, say, a bigamous marriage which is void at its inception.

So, as far as Jayla and Jose, technically, the marriage is voidable and would not be recognized as legal. But if both sets of parents consent to it, and if the court was persuaded that they both understood the meaning of being married to each other at this time, the court may allow it.

Still, I think these two only had a “symbolic” marriage. I don’t think it was solemnized by proper officials. I mean, I don’t know for sure who solemnized it. But the general sense I am getting is that it was purely symbolic and purely a “friendship” thing.

It’s still a cute story. And a sad one too. But check out Jayla as she sweeps in for her kiss! Did they say “you may kiss your husband?” Or “you may kiss the bride?” Cause it sure looks to me that she is aggressor here. Which is cute. Go Jayla! You go, girl!

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