Divorce Rate Increases the Beginning of a New Year

Forget Black Friday, Black Monday is Here

It is very interesting to note that in January, the rate of divorce filings increases dramatically beginning on the first Monday after the New Year.  Statistically speaking, divorce filings will spike in January and remain high through March.  So why January you may be thinking?  Is it those New Year’s resolutions?   Was in-law Aunt Bethany’s extended visit over the holidays the straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back? 

There are a number of theories on why the divorce spike occurs in January each year.  The most obvious one is that couples wait until the holidays are over.  They may want to give the children one more holiday with the family all together, and the holiday season doesn’t seem like the right time to separate; so a decision that has been contemplated for some time is put off until the New Year. 

Another reason January filings spike could be the resolutions that occur with each New Year.  If you are reflecting over years past, you may realize you really don’t want your life to continue in the same manner.  It makes me think of the adage “Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.”  

Believe it or not, the winter weather has an impact on this statistic as well.  Often cold and gloomy weather can lead to depression and hopelessness about a relationship, causing people to take the divorce plunge.

There are tax reasons to consider, too.  According to the IRS, your marital status on December 31 of any given year determines how you will file your taxes for that year, so many people initiate the action early in the year so that it is hopefully completed and they can file as single by year’s end.  

No time is an easy time to file for divorce.  It will be hard on every party involved. Whenever you decide to file for divorce, just know that the filing the complaint is just the first stage. A couple faces many issues when they divorce, and a spouse needs the expert advice of a divorce attorney to guide them through the process. 

Published by Sarah D. Miranda on January 11, 2017