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Missouri bill could make marriages easier for inmates

Monday, March 17, 2014 | 7:48 a.m. CDT; updated 11:16 a.m. CDT, Monday, March 17, 2014

JEFFERSON CITY — A measure making it easier for inmates to get married is moving through the Missouri legislature.

The legislation would create an inmate exception to a Missouri law that requires people seeking a marriage license to appear in person before the local recorder of deeds.

Some recorders have gone into prisons in the past in order to get signatures on marriage licenses.

But over the past year, three federal judges have ruled in separate cases that Missouri's in-person license requirement is unconstitutional for prisoners wanting to get married.

A bill that passed the Senate last week and is now pending in the House would allow inmates to apply for marriage licenses using an affidavit.

The legislature is on spring break until March 24.


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