Question: Is it OK for 3rd cousins to date?

Is it okay to date your third cousin? Since third cousins share only a very small percentage of their DNA, there is no issue with third cousins dating from a genetic perspective. According to an article by The Spruce, marriage between second cousins and more distant cousins is legal throughout the United States.

In short, yes, it is legal for second and third cousins to marry in the US. The risk of birth defects in children born to first cousins is increased from a baseline of 3-4 percent to 4-7 percent, according to the National Society of Genetic Counselors.

Can you have a baby with your 3rd cousin?

The researchers suggest marrying third and fourth cousins is so optimal for reproduction because they sort of have the best of both worlds. While first-cousin couples could have inbreeding problems, couples who are far-removed from each other could have genetic incompatibilities.

Do 4th cousins count?

If the other cousin is the great-great-great-great grandchild, then there is one generation difference between them and they are fourth cousins once-removed. If there is more than one difference in generations between the cousins, then you just keep counting.

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