why do we split property/assets equally upon divorce?


Everyone heard of golddiggers and how they marry someone rich then get divorced to get half of everything. Why is this allowed/normal?

In: Other

Historically the man made the money to support the woman and the woman was a housemaker that raised the family. That meant that if they only gave things to the person who had made the money to buy them… then the guy would traditionally wind up with everything and the woman would be left with nothing. Which is a pretty unfair system when she contributed a lot to the wellbeing of her family, too.

As far as “golddiggers” go, there *are* prenuptial agreements couples can sign before marriage to prevent a partner from getting so many assets post-divorce.

The laws were written in a time when we had what is now considered a more traditional view on marridge. The concept was that a man and women got married and he got a job to make money for the household and she worked equally hard maintaining the home and supporting her husbond. And with this view it makes perfect sense why the assets should be split half way in a divorce. The husbond should not be able to hold his wifes earnings hostage.

You could maybe change the laws to better reflect modern views on marridge. A lot of people take matters into their own hands and sign a prenup which is a contract that say what should happen in the case of a divorce which is signed before the marridge takes place. This way it is possible to keep assets you made before marridge out of a divorce settlement.

Marriage is a contract making each partner legally liable for the others debts. Everything, unless specified in a pre-nup, is considered equally owned and therefore equally divided upon divorce. However, a divorce can take many forms as long as both parties agree. Of course this can differ from state to state.

We don’t always. The split is based on local law and, when allowed, legal agreements signed into by the two parties before marriage.


To add to this, when you’re in a relationship and sharing finances, possessions, domestic work, childcare, etc., it becomes difficult to disentangle just what ‘rightfully’ belongs to which person. In addition, marriage at least *aims* to be a partnership for life, one that is (in some sense) equal. Hence legally everything kind of gets put into one big pool.