Heather Mahar of the Harvard Law School recently concluded a study in which she sought to assess whether the common perception that prenuptial agreements increase the likelihood that a marriage will end in divorce, and came to the conclusion that such agreements, if properly drafted and entered into for the right reasons, can actually increase the likehihood that the marriage will be successful. You can read more about the study here. The press release announcing the resutls of the study states that:
Mahar argues that the division of assets is ‘the least compelling reason for average American couples to consider prenuptial agreements, since most couples do not enter marriages with significant assets.’ However, she finds that ‘for couples who choose a traditional partnership, with one spouse exiting the workforce to raise children, agreeing in advance about how to divide assets earned during a marriage or potential future earnings can protect the stay-at-home spouse against divorce laws, which have generally eliminated long-term alimony.’
The process of creating a prenup acts as form of premarital counseling, making couples talk about what kind of marriage they want, and what legal ramifications there will be if one spouse veers off course.
In the study Mahar advocates mandatory prenuptial agreements. That is perhaps a radical prescription, but it is always refreshing to see the conventional wisdom aggressively challenged.
Source for Post: Pennsylvania Family Law Blog.