Marriage: What is it good for? - Boodle Hatfield

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Marriage: What is it good for?

In March, Boodle Hatfield’s renowned family law team held a provocative panel discussion exploring what motivates people in the modern day to enter into the legal union of marriage and whether we should continue to award a special status to the married in our society.  Or, to plagiarise the wonderful 80s band Frankie Goes to Hollywood, is marriage now good for a resounding “absolutely nothing”?

The discussion was hosted by multi-award-winning financial journalist, broadcaster and commentator, Claer Barrett, and was enriched with insights, research and experiences from Sir Nicholas Mostyn (former judge of the Family Division of the High Court), Caitlin Moran (journalist, broadcaster, and author), Professor Gordon Harold (Professor of the Psychology of Education and Mental Health at Cambridge University), and Professor Berkay Ozcan (Professor of Social and Public Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science).

The event opened with an introduction from Partner and Head of Family Law, Emily Brand, who relayed how British adults today are 45% more likely to have never been married than they were in 1991, with current trends suggesting that marriage will all but disappear by 2062 – that’s less than 40 years away. She questioned whether the ring of marriage does indeed symbolise a love as pure as gold and as unending as a circle, or is it in fact the ring of Sauron (as in the Lord of the Rings); a coveted object, endlessly pursued, that endows the wearer with great power but progressively corrupts their mind?.

Together our illustrious panel of experts and enthused audience explored a number of themes and a teaser from the evening can be accessed below.