Can the Cost of Your Wedding Predict the Likelihood of Divorce?

Many Michigan couples plan elaborate weddings and spend tens of thousands of dollars. With the recent royal wedding, numerous engaged couples are thinking about their own ceremonies and celebrations, and considering whether it is worth the cost to spend a significant amount of money on an event that will last for just one day. According to an article in The Economist, spending substantially more on wedding day expenses could end up meaning that you are more likely than other couples to get divorced at some point in the future. That information comes from research published in a paper by scholars at Emory University and National University of Singapore.

While it might sound unlikely, the data does suggest that couples who spend a lot on flashier weddings may be more likely to file for divorce later on in life.

How Wedding Spending and Marriage Duration May Be Related

The study looked at about 3,000 married couples in the United States, and it took steps to control for factors such as demographics and particular characteristics of the relationship. According to the researchers, there is "evidence that marriage duration is inversely associated with spending on the engagement ring and wedding ceremony." In other words, the more you spend on the wedding and the festivities surrounding it, the less likely it may be that your marriage will last.

According to the article, couples who got married in the United States in 2017 spent an average of $26,000 on the wedding. In total, weddings cost more than $56 billion last year at about 2.2 million wedding ceremonies. To put that figure another way, the total cost of all weddings in the U.S. last year totaled "more than the annual GDP of half the countries of the world." And that figures represents a decline in the average price tag of a wedding these days. To be sure, "a typical couples spends 6% less on nuptials than they did in 2008, after accounting for inflation."

Couples Who Spend More on Wedding May be More Concerned About Image

The most expensive item for most couples is food, which averages about $4,700, yet the average cost for a wedding ring is $3,400. The research we mentioned was conducted a few years ago now, but subsequent surveys have come to the same conclusion - planning a "pricey spectacle" may mean that spouses are less committed to one another and more committed to the image of the marriage. Not only does the cost of an expensive wedding take a toll on a marriage and risk resulting in later financial problems, but it could also be a sign of early problems in the relationship.

What are the takeaways? Most notably, "couples who spent more than $30,000 on their nuptials [are] more likely to worry about impressing their guests and looking their best than those with budgets of under $10,000." In short, "money can't buy you love," the article emphasizes.

Discuss Your Case with a Michigan Divorce Lawyer

Getting divorced in Michigan can be complicated, but an experienced Michigan divorce attorney can assist with your case. Contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins to learn more about the services we provide to clients who need help with a wide variety of divorce issues.