You always have the right to choose who you decide to marry, when you marry or if you marry at all.
Forced marriage is when you are placed under physical pressure to marry (for example, threats, physical violence or sexual violence) or emotional and psychological pressure. You may be told that if you do not agree to the marriage you are bringing shame on your family.
Forced marriage is illegal in England and Wales. You are not permitted to take someone overseas to force them to marry (whether or not the forced marriage takes place) and nor should you take anyone or encourage anyone marrying someone who lacks the mental capacity to consent to the marriage (whether they’re pressured to or not). If you force someone to marry this can result in a sentence of up to 7 years in prison.
If you find yourself in the position of a forced marriage or know someone who us, you can apply to the court for a forced marriage protection order.
Each order is unique and is designed to protect you according to your individual circumstances.
Disobeying a forced marriage protection order can result in a sentence of up to 5 years in prison.