When are you considered an adult? I have always thought that at the age of 18 you are considered an adult, but your age and what you can do at that age, varies from state to state and from act to act. In Maryland you can:
- Get a driver’s license at the age of 16
- When you reach 18 years old, you can sign legal contracts and documents
- You may vote at age 18 and males must register for the draft
- Drink alcoholic beverages and gamble at 21 years old
- As of October 1, 2019, you must be age 21 to buy tobacco products
- At 25 years old, you can run for the House of Representatives, the Senate at age 30 and 35 to run for Presidency
Currently in the state of Maryland, at the age of 15 with parental consent, and certain documentation, the Clerk of the Court, can issue a marriage license. That is the case in many states and in some states there is no minimum age requirement. At the ages of 16 and 17 you only have to fulfill one of the requirements, parental consent or the appropriate documentation.
This year in the legislative session of the Maryland General Assembly, there is a bill pending to raise the minimum age for marriage to 17. This is the fifth year for the introduction of this bill and it has a lot of support. According to Senator Sarah Elfreth, every public policy indicator – from educational outcomes, instances of domestic violence and divorce rates – suggest that minors should not enter the contract of marriage. I will continue to follow the bill for the outcome.