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7.1: State Ratification Within Seven Years

The article shall be inoperative unless, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States, the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or if the Congress proposes them by conventions in three fourths thereof, shall have ratified it as an Amendment to the Constitution.

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Explanation of State Ratification Within Seven Years

State Ratification: The article shall be inoperative unless, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States, the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or if the Congress proposes them by conventions in three fourths thereof, shall have ratified it as an Amendment to the Constitution. Congress has consistently added this ratification standard clause to recent Amendments.