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Divorce May be Seasonal, Research Shows

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Spring is here and for many that means a start to a new season, college basketball, and better weather on the way. According to a recent study from the University of Washington, it may also mean a time for divorce. That’s because researchers found significant peaks in divorce filings at two points during the year: March and August.

According to the study, which analyzed nearly 20 years of divorce filings in the state of Washington, spring and late summer show consistent surges in the number of people who file for divorce. For example, in one of the largest counties studied, divorce rates climbed to an average of 520 filings, compared to an average of 430 in December. Researchers also found the same seasonal pattern when comparing divorce rates in Washington to other states across the country, including Florida.

Researchers believe the spikes in filings could be attributed to the fact that winter and summer months are times when spouses may start taking action on things they have been considering for some time. For example, researchers noted:

  • Winter and Summer Holidays – winter and summer holidays are a time when many people go on family vacations or visit family to celebrate the holidays. This in itself can cause many people to stick things through for the sake of their loved ones, especially as many believe a vacation or family time could mend a broken marriage. Married couples often create expectations that things will work out with the help of a “time out” from the demands of daily live. When winter and summer holidays come to an end and spouses find that these vacations did not help or live up to these expectations, or that new arguments or issues arouse, many make the decision to initiate the divorce process. The disillusionment that follows rough holidays can be the catalyst for making spouses who have already been considering divorce finally take action.
  • Time – While many people may make the decision to get a divorce during the summer and winter months, they often take some time to handle the various obligations that can come during these times of year. Many people also take time to organize themselves, search out advice or potential attorneys, and get their finances in order before beginning the actual legal process. This tends to support why filings are higher in March than they are right after winter holidays in January.
  • Children – Spouses with children naturally consider the impact a divorce, and the process itself, will have on their children. Failed family vacations may mean that a parent will initiate a divorce in order to handle issues before children begin summer vacation or before they return to school during summer break.

While studies suggest March sees more divorce filings than other months of the year, it is important to remember that the right time to split is entirely a personal decision. If March and spring, or even August and the end of summer, afford the time to initiate a divorce or tie up loose ends in regard to family law matters, then it can be great to address your legal needs before summer and vacation months.

Whenever you wish to discuss a divorce or family law issue, our Jacksonville divorce lawyers at Owenby Law, P.A. are available around the clock to help. Our experienced attorneys have the insight and resources to help clients efficiently navigate the divorce process while protecting their interests. We also provide assistance in all related family law matters, including child custody and support. Contact us today to speak with a member of our team!