Donna Dougherty Law P.C.

National divorce statistics and factors

Despite the fact that no two marriages are the same, it is possible to track relationship trends across the state of Virginia and the country. By considering such factors as childbirths, income levels and divorce rates, researchers can gain insight into everything from many Americans’ financial priorities to their approaches to family planning. Now that the findings of one recent study have been released, experts in multiple fields are taking notes.

According to a survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, approximately 11 percent of Americans over the age of 15 were divorced in 2013, while almost half of that population was married. It is also estimated that marriage and divorce rates were on the slow decline, as a little over 850,000 divorces and annulments happened in 2012.

Considering some of the factors that contribute to marriage and divorce rates across the country, researchers identified several trends. For instance, there is evidence to suggest that the income level and/or financial difficulties of a married couple can increase the likelihood of them filing for divorce. Divorce rates were higher in states with higher levels of poverty, while states with above-average income levels reportedly had lower incidents of divorce.

The presence of children in families was also found to impact divorce rates. The states with the lowest divorce rates were also those with higher numbers of households with minor children. Perhaps the least surprising finding in the study was that states with higher divorce rates were also those with higher marriage rates.

Source: 24/7 Wall St., “The States With The Most (And Least) Divorces,” Thomas C. Frohlich and Michael B. Sauter, May 15, 2015 

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