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

Michael Svarer
The Journal of Human Resources
Vol. 39, No. 2 (Spring, 2004), pp. 523-535
DOI: 10.2307/3559025
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3559025
Page Count: 13
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Is Your Love in Vain? Another Look at Premarital Cohabitation and Divorce
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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.

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