Divorce Rates and Marital Contracts

Marion Leturcq , Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)
Enrica Maria Martino, Institut National d’Études Démographiques (INED)

Recent papers found that the share of married couples opting for a separation of assets regime have increased in France over the last decades. Separating assets is seen as a protection in case of divorce, especially among couples at-risk of divorce. However, there is no evidence that couples who opted for a separation of assets regime are more at-risk of divorce. We use repeated cross-sectional data of the French population in 1992, 1998, 2004, 2010 and 2014. Our estimation strategy is based on a comparison of the share of couples with a marital contract married in year Y, measured at wave T to the share at wave T+1. An increase means that couples with a marital contract divorce less than other couples. We expand this strategy to account for individual characteristics. Our preliminary results show that couples deciding to separate their assets are less at-risk of divorce than other couples.

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 Presented in Session 4. Marriage, Family, Households, & Unions