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Is Your Love in Vain? Another Look at Premarital Cohabitation and Divorce

Michael Svarer ()

Journal of Human Resources, 2004, vol. 39, issue 2

Abstract: In this paper we provide an empirical investigation of the association between premarital cohabitation and subsequent risk of divorce. Theoretically couples who cohabit before marriage should have a lower subsequent risk of divorce since cohabitation enables you to gather information about the match quality, and only good matches evolve into marriage. However, a considerable number of papers have come to the complete opposite conclusion. The counter-intuitive result has been justified with self-selection of cohabitants as the main argument. In the present paper, we provide new evidence concerning the relationship between premarital cohabitation and divorce.

Date: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:39:y:2004:i:2:p523-535