Thursday, July 15, 2010

More Married Women Are Bringing Home the Bacon

The New York Times and USA Today just reported that men are now marrying wealthier women. According to the Pew Research Center, the last 40 years have resulted in more women graduating with college degrees and an increase in women’s earnings by 44 %. What does this mean for couples either anticipating marriage or married couples contemplating divorces?

For couples that are anticipating marriage, it is very important to consider having a prenuptial agreement in place prior to getting married. This is particularly important if each person has their own property, investments, retirement and savings. A prenuptial agreement is an agreement between couples getting married on how they are going to distribute assets they bring to the marriage and assets they acquire during the marriage if the couple divorces or if one of them passes away.

For married couples anticipating divorce, the earning capacity of both people is considered in issues of child support and spousal support. With the changes in women’s income and education over the last 40 years, spousal support (formerly called alimony) is awarded very differently. Factors considered in spousal support awards include educational level, ability to work and earning capacity. Factors for child support include the earnings of both parents. Long-term and permanent spousal support is almost the exception today, and most awards are given only when the income discrepancy between the spouses is somewhat significant. Child support awards likewise are affected if both parents are working.

You can read the NY Times article here: More Men Marrying Wealthier Women

You can read the USA Today article here: Study: Marriage Benefits Men Economically

If you are interested in learning more about prenuptial agreements or have a question about divorce, please call Wendy Alton at 248-380-9976 or email her at

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