Young adults are often the drivers of change, and the millennial generation is no different. Their views on both marriage and divorce are drastically shifting both processes, and is even bringing down the average divorce rate in California and across the rest of the United States. The divorce rate has fallen 24% since 1981 and is expected to continue falling for the next several years. One reason for the lower divorce rate is that many millennials are simply not tying the knot, but that is far from the only explanation.
Experts believe that the millennial generation has a better understanding of how important it is to have their finances situated before getting married. These adults witnessed their parents’ divorces when they were children and teens and saw that ending a marriage is both an emotional and financially stressful experience. Seeing this made many people in this generation want to establish themselves financially before making the step toward marriage. Since money is one of the leading causes of divorce and a primary reason that couples attend marriage counseling, getting financial ducks in a row before saying “I do” might not be a bad idea.
The average age of marriage for millennials is 29 for men and 27 for women. By this time, most adults have already established their careers, taken on some debt and built up some personal wealth. This means that these adults have more to protect than their parents did when they got married. Prenuptial agreements are increasingly popular among millennial couples who are engaged and ready to marry. Not only can individuals protect their personal assets in the event of a divorce, but they can also protect themselves from a partner’s debts.
It is true that getting a divorce can be both financially and emotionally draining. It makes sense for adults in California to take time and care when approaching marriage, because no matter how low the divorce rate goes, it never reaches zero. Careful foresight — particularly in regards to prenuptial agreements — can help soon-to-be-married couples protect themselves, their property and their interests should they decide to divorce.