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Divorce Around the World: Facts & Stats

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There are many interesting facts and stats regarding divorce.  Some are hard to believe and should be taken with a grain of salt. Often, different sources report conflicting data, further muddying the topic. Here are some of the most interesting (and craziest) divorce fact and stats we’ve come across.

Divorce Rates

One divorce is filed every 36 seconds in the U.S., and the percentage of marriages ending in divorce was 44.2% in 2021. This rate peaked at 53% between 1979 – 1981 but, depending on the year, it typically falls between 40-50%.

Divorce rates increase once people have remarried, with 67% of people’s second marriages ending in divorce, and 75% of third marriages ending in divorce.

Divorce Facts & Stats: Every 36 seconds a divorce is field in the U.S.

Those who get married between the ages of 15 and 24 have the highest divorce rate, coming in at roughly twice the national average.

People who wait until they are between 28 and 32 years of age are far less likely to divorce, which may have something to do with the average age for marriage climbing from 24 in 1986 to 27 in 2017. Not only do millennials have lower divorce rates than those younger than them, but they also have lower divorce rates than those older than them.

Senior citizens are the only age group in which the divorce rate is increasing. 

Since 1990, the divorce rate has doubled for people over 50, and the rate for people over 65 years has tripled. Despite this rapid increase, however, the divorce rate for these age groups is still below the national average.

Divorce rates can significantly vary based on factors beyond age as well. For instance, residents of Hawaii get divorced less than any other state. On the other hand, states in the bible belt have the highest divorce rates, with Alabama leading the pack.

When it comes to divorce rates by country, Maldives, Belarus, and Russia are the top three, while Guatemala and Vietnam have the lowest rates.

For cities, London is considered the divorce capital of the world, while Vatican City is the most difficult place to get divorced. Rome tends to have the longest and healthiest marriages.

Divorce Facts & Stats: London is considered the divorce capital of the world. Rome tends to have the longest and healthiest marriages.

Religion can be an important factor as well, as shown by this breakdown of divorce rates by religion:

  • Protestant – 34% 
  • Muslim – 31% 
  • Jewish – 30%   
  • Catholic – 21% 
  • Buddhist – 10% 
  • Hindu – 1% 

Someone’s career can be another indicator of their likelihood to get a divorce. Gaming and casino managers, bartenders, and flight attendants have the highest rates, while journalists, farmers, and optometrists have the lowest.

Overall, the divorce rate is generally stable but steadily decreasing over the long term. As the percentage of marriages decrease, so does the percentage of divorce. As the population grows, it’s important to place more weight on percentage figures rather than gross numbers, as the gross number may be up while the percentage is down.

Divorce Facts & Stats For Marriage

The average length of a marriage in the U.S. is 8.2 years, and divorce is most common in the seventh and eighth years of marriage.

Most marriages end due to infidelity, which is not shocking when you learn that 25% of married men and 15% of married women have extramarital affairs.

Divorce Facts & Stats: The average marriage in the U.S. lasts 8.2 years.

Women file for 70% of all divorces, and 90% of all divorces involve college graduates. This is likely due to the disproportionate infidelity rates. It could also be influenced by the fact that men more commonly disagree with divorce. In keeping with this trend, marriages between two men tend to last longer than marriages between two women.

It is most common for couples to get married in June. However, most couples get divorced between January and March. 

The average divorce in the U.S. costs $12,800, which is perhaps part of the reason why non-married couples who cohabitate break up at higher rates than married couples divorce. Speaking of non-married couples, did you know that only 52% of single parents have been married?

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We hope you found these divorce facts and statistics as fascinating as we did. We want to remind you to take any of these facts too seriously. Just because there is a trend does not mean that any two marriages look the same. Feel free to browse our website for more information on all aspects of divorce. If you’re ready to take the next steps in your divorce, call us today.

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