Quick Guide to Marriages of Convenience


We all want to find “the one” in a perfect world and live happily ever after. Of course, with half of all marriages ending in divorce, most of us don’t find “the one.” We may think the person we’re with is the one for us, but it turns out otherwise. Now, this isn’t anyone’s fault. You know the saying, love is blind. 

But some people prefer not to waste time with these low odds and enter a marriage of convenience. Now, it may not sound as romantic as meeting “the one” in a bookstore or at a cat cafe, but marriages of convenience certainly have their own perks. If you’re considering a marriage of convenience, then it’s time you took a look at this quick guide.

What is a marriage of convenience?

Let’s get down to the basics: what is a marriage of convenience? Strictly speaking, a marriage of convenience is when two people enter a marriage for strategic purposes, including financial, legal, or practical reasons. Marriages of convenience do not start because the couple is in love; however, it doesn’t mean they cannot fall in love later on. 

In many cases, marriages of convenience are involved in immigration situations. One partner wants to move to the desired country, so they meet someone from that said country. They agree to be together so the person can gain residency. However, that has changed throughout the years. Yes, marriages of convenience still happen for immigration purposes, but they can also occur for other reasons. For example, some people seek financial support in exchange for bearing children; others don’t want to be lonely. There are many reasons why people engage in marriages of convenience.

Can marriages of convenience work?

All marriages have the risk of failing, whether it’s a marriage of convenience or not. However, if both parties agree to the terms of the marriage and have open communication, they can have a successful marriage. If one partner is not being honest about their intentions, that’s when problems can arise.  

Are marriages of convenience legal?

Marrying for convenience is legal as long as it’s not to gain residency in another country. Suppose you marry someone just for residency in another country, and the state suspects so. In that case, the application process can be denied and/or you can receive additional penalties depending on the state you live in. Other than that, marriages of convenience are legal.

Important tips to know before entering a marriage of convenience

Here are some helpful tips to know before entering a marriage of convenience.

Be open and honest with your partner

What are your intentions with this marriage? What do you want from it? While it may be uncomfortable to open up to your partner, it’s important they know the truth and vice versa. This will eliminate any future conflict in your marriage. If you’re both on the same page, you have a higher chance of having the marriage work in the long term. 

Establish the rules

Why are you and your partner getting married? What are the rules? Will you two be intimate together? Are you having an open relationship? Who’s financially responsible? What’s the plan if you choose to end the marriage? These are questions you both need the answers to. Rules must be established in your marriage. 

Will this marriage fulfill your needs?

Are you achieving your goals by entering into this marriage? If your goal is to have children, is your partner in agreement to having kids? If your marriage of convenience isn’t fulfilling your needs, then it’s not very convenient. Take some time to think about whether this marriage will fulfill you and your partner’s needs. 

Marriages of convenience have the potential to work out very well for those involved, but it does take some time to ensure you’re both getting what you need from it. Don’t be scared to talk about it and see if this marriage is right for you.