What in the World is a “Wife Bonus”?

Several years ago, a story was released in The New Yorker about the ‘Wives of Wall Street’ and how there was a trend with moms of being paid “Wife Bonuses.” If you didn’t have the chance to read the article, we have the recap for you. 

First of all, What is a Wife Bonus?

A Wife Bonus is a payment that a husband is contractually obligated to make to his wife, during their marriage to compensate for her performance as a mother and wife. These agreements ensure women get the financial compensation that they are entitled to.

I mean, let’s be real, is there a harder job than being a mom and a wife? Wouldn’t it make sense that they are rewarded when they meet or exceed expectations?

These bonuses are not a way for women to “earn their keep,” they are literally five to six figure payments.


The Back Story 

In New York, there are theories that the idea of a Wife Bonus originated with bankers. Many high-paid bankers would pay their wives a certain percentage of whatever their company bonus was that year. That money was then allowed to be spent on more luxurious items or trips that a wife wouldn’t typically pick out or pay for otherwise. 

Many husbands recognize that their wives put their husband’s career before their own, or feel that it was important to them that the wife stay home with the child, and in such instances, they should be rewarded for it. In some instances for men, it is a ‘humble brag’ if you may call it, because it ultimately is a luxury these days to be able to afford for your wife to stay home and raise children.


Can They be a Thing?

Sure they can. However, you would not go to your Family Law attorney’s office and ask for a Wife Bonus agreement. Technically a “Wife Bonus” is a creative way to describe a Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement.  

All in all, this principle is up to the spouses to figure out and structure. There is no “right way” to do it if you wish to pursue one. 


If you have any questions about collaborative divorce or how to move forward with one in the Tampa Bay area, then hire one of the top divorce lawyers. Call us: (813) 907-9807


Anton Garcia Law


(813) 907-9807