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Current marital status

Codes and Frequencies

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MARST reports the person's current marital status.


This variable is largely comparable over time, with two exceptions:

First, the universe for marital status changed in 1982. Prior to 1982, information on marital status was collected only for individuals 17 and older. Beginning in 1982, information on marital status was collected for individuals 14 and older.

Second, information about whether the spouse of married respondents was present in the household was collected starting in 1973.

For the 1963-2003 samples, the values of this variable are identical to those in MARSTAT. However, in 2004, the National Health Interview Survey stopped including categories for "Married - spouse present," "Married - spouse absent," and "Married - spouse in household unknown." For the 2004-forward samples, MARST draws on information from MARSTCOHAB.


  • 1963-1981: Persons age 17+.
  • 1982-2018: Persons age 14+.


  • 1963-2018