The State and Marriage II: How would things look after the Cutting of the Connection?

In a second guest post, Daniel Hill, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Liverpool, elaborates on his proposal to end the state’s involvement in the institution of marriage.

In my previous post, I argued that the connection between the state and the institution of marriage should be cut, in such a way as to leave no laws regarding the formation, nature, or even existence of marriage on the statute book. In this post, I try to explore how things might look if there were no such laws.

In what follows I use phrases like “legal marriage” and “spouse at law” because I am not making the totalitarian proposal that marriage itself should be abolished, but rather the more modest proposal that the state (including government, legislature, judiciary, and the law itself) should cease trying to meddle with it. On my proposal, people will still continue to get married but do so outside the purview of the state, as is possible even now, in my opinion.

Registration of marriage

On my proposal, while registration of births and deaths would continue, registration of marriages would not be continued. Continue reading