Cultures change over time. A generation or two ago few couples lived together before marrying, and in the 1960s, the roughly 10 percent of couples who cohabitated prior to marriage ended up with a higher divorce rate than the 90 percent of couples who waited until marriage to live together. Many people speak of the divorce rate in today's culture-- the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently looked at family law trends, especially those trends related to first marriages.
The CDC researchers say that roughly 40 percent of survey participants between the ages of 15 and 44 were married in the years 2006 to 2010. The researchers confirmed what many people have said concerning the likelihood a first-time married couple will eventually divorce, concluding that roughly 50 percent of marriages end in divorce. The CDC says, however, that cohabitation before marriage does not appear to have much impact upon the divorce rate as it appeared to have in the 1960s.
Changing cultural attitudes about marriage and divorce may have led to the change. Houston family law lawyers are aware that changing attitudes concerning marriage and divorce may also be a factor in trends regarding prenuptial agreements.
Many people seem to accept the potential for divorce and choose to help to avoid future contentious issues by making an agreement over such issues as property division in advance, reducing the potential for contentious disputes when emotions change.
While the CDC research found that couples who cohabited before marriage and those that did were about the same likelihood to have a marriage lasting at least 15 years, the researchers say subtle distinctions arose depending on the timing of the engagement.
The CDC says that among women participating in the research, roughly 60 percent who had not cohabitated prior to marriage or were engaged while cohabitating were likely to have a marriage that lasted 15 years. If no firm commitment of marriage occurred while couples cohabitated, the likelihood of a 15 year marriage dropped to 53 percent.
National research and statistics can help some to understand overall trends in issues that can arise in the area of family law. But when it comes down to an individual case, national statistics may only serve to show that others may be going through similar issues. For instance, in an individual situation, seasoned family law attorney can help a person who is considering marriage to understand what a prenuptial agreement can provide.
Similarly, when contemplating divorce, an experienced divorce lawyer can help an individual to rationally asses a variety of issues that can arise to protect the person's rights in a family law setting.
Source: The Pioneer Press, "Moving in together before marriage no longer predicts divorce, study finds" Mike Stobbe-Associated Press Mar. 22, 2012