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15+ Sample Marriage Contract Templates
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What Is a Marriage Contract?
According to the Legal Information Institute, marriage has three essential elements: (1) the couple’s legal aptness to marry, (2) the consent of both parties, and (3) a written marriage contract. In earlier times, marriage was a vital element that preserves the community’s morality. Traditionally, a husband’s role is to provide for his family’s basic needs, such as a house to live in, clothes to wear, and food to eat. The wife’s responsibility is to take care of the home, meet his husband’s sexual desires, and rear up the children. However, today, those legal obligations don’t apply to all marriages because of the changes happening in society. A marriage contract or a marital contract is an agreement that legally binds a husband to one wife and a wife to one husband. Once a person is married, he/she can only legally leave his spouse by divorce, annulment, or death. Note that marriages happen between all cultures, genders, and races. Also, generally speaking, marriages can either be Catholic or Islamic.
Statista reports that in 2018, the rate of marriage in the U.S. stood at about 6.5 marriages per 1,000 people.
That is a significant decrease compared to the 1900s, where the rate was 9.8 weddings per 1,000 people.
When we speak of same-sex marriage, Gallup reports that in 2017, one out of ten or 10% of the LGBTs living in the U.S. were married.
Facts About Relationships Every Couple Should Know
Not all relationships are the same, and researchers believe that the success of a relationship depends on some predictors. So, here are some facts about relationships every couple must know before they marry.
How To Preserve Your Marriage and Live a Happy Married Life
It takes effort to protect, strengthen, and develop a marriage. When work, children, chores, and other responsibilities worry a couple, it can be challenging to maintain their partnership. When conflicts arise, couples tend to file for divorce rather than work on the relationship. So, here are steps to avoid divorce if you are the type who wants to preserve your marriage.
Step 1: Don’t Even Think About Divorce
Thinking about divorce can still affect your relationship, even if they remain there. The fact is, the idea itself can reduce your motivation to strengthen your marriage. To fight this idea, make a final decision about not considering divorce as an option. By doing that, you can begin focusing on how you can grow your relationship with your spouse, rather than imagining a life without him/her.
Step 2: Respect and Honor Your Spouse
Change is inevitable, whether we like it or not. As a new couple, you may be more sweet and appreciative of your partner, but in time your attitude changed. Remember how you treated your partner way back the time before you even submitted a marriage application or applied for a marriage license. Remind yourself about how wonderful your spouse is by making a list of his/her best qualities. Let your husband/wife know how you appreciate him/her even for the little things he/she does for you. Respect and honor your partner for as long as you live.
Step 3: Always Communicate With Your Partner
In the digital age, where we often use our smartphones to communicate, to entertain ourselves, and even to work, we often overlook the importance of having real conversations. Openly sharing about what’s happening with your life is one way to develop a more intimate relationship with your husband or wife. Also, you must open your ears and try to understand what your partner’s thoughts are. Set aside at least 30 minutes of your day to talk face to face with your partner away from distractions.
Step 4: Be Open About Your Expectations Regarding Your Finances
Most couples fight over finances. So, you and your partner must agree by creating a contract as a couple. Your written agreement must spell out your expectations when it comes to handling money. Agree on what your budget is going to be, how you are going to pay your debts, and where you will spend your money. Moreover, a couple should also give themselves a breather by spending their finances on entertainment, vacations, activities, etc.
Step 5: Give Your Partner Some Space
In marriage, it can be hard to balance between being too suffocating or too inattentive. If you think your spouse needs some space to go out with his/her friends, do his errands or watch over the kids for her. Also, it’s vital to spend more than enough time with your spouse. If obligations come in the way, plan a fixed date with your partner ahead, even if it’s movie night at home. A balance between the two is key to a happy married life.
Step 6: Forgive and Don’t Hold a Grudge Against Your Spouse
Marriages fall apart when one party holds contempt against the other. Research proves that holding a grudge against your partner increases the likelihood of divorce if not resolved. For that reason, you must forgive your spouse for his/her faults. Forgiveness will benefit not only your partner, but also you. Keeping a grudge can increase a person’s stress level and affect his/her sleep. Therefore, if your partner asks for forgiveness, sincerely, forgive him/her also genuinely.
Is a marriage contract similar to a wedding contract?
No. A wedding contract is an agreement between a couple and a wedding vendor. A wedding vendor can be an event planner, a caterer, a florist, a musician, etc.
What is an Islamic marriage contract?
In Islam marriages, there should be an offer, ratification, contract signing, and public announcement of the marriage. An Islamic marriage contract demands a man to support the woman financially. If the woman decides to work, her money is her property. Typically, an Islamic marriage contract contains stipulations concerning divorce, monogamy, work, education, etc.
What is a Jewish marriage contract?
a Jewish marriage contract or also known as “ketubah,” is a one-sided agreement created by witnesses. It testifies about the husband’s promises to his wife, concerning provisions as the Torah imposes. Additionally, the contract demands that a husband pays a specific sum in case of divorce. Note that the acceptance of the agreement wholly depends on the woman. Those are the laws of the marriage contract.
What is a dating contract?
A dating contract or a relationship contract is an informal document between two unmarried couples. It addresses the questions: What does it mean to be in a relationship? How do you treat each other as a couple? What do you expect from each other? You take note of all your thoughts concerning your relationship, and it will serve as a basis in case issues arise later on.
A marriage contract is a written document that legally binds a man to a woman or a woman to a man. Also, it is proof of a lifetime commitment a husband has for his wife or the other way around. Though divorce is real, one cannot easily break the union between a husband and a wife.