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blog home Divorce Census Bureau Survey Discovers U.S. Divorces Decline Slightly, But “Seven-Year Itch” Remains

Census Bureau Survey Discovers U.S. Divorces Decline Slightly, But “Seven-Year Itch” Remains

By Nottage and Ward on June 13, 2011

ABC News reports that new data released by the Census Bureau shows that divorces in the U.S. have tapered slightly after decades of steadily increasing. Couples are now more likely to achieve 10 years of marriage. However, the trend of couples getting a divorce after seven years of marriage, called the “seven-year itch,” remains.

The Census Bureau obtained the data after conducting its Survey of Income and Program Participation in 2009, which surveyed 55,497 adults who are or have been married. Approximately 75 percent of people who have been married since the 1990s reported they had been married for 10 years or more, an increase of around three percent as compared to people married in the 1980s, when divorce rates in the U.S. began to peak. The 1960s and 1970s saw the highest divorce rates as the result of new laws that were passed that made it easier and faster to divorce.

Based upon the new data, it is estimated that one out of every two first marriages will end in divorce, and about 46 percent of marriages do not last 25 years. The survey also found that couples who divorced, on average, separated after about seven years of marriage, and divorced one year later. For people who remarried, they typically did so after four years.

The Census Bureau credits the slight decline in divorce partially to the recent rise in couples who choose to cohabit instead of marry, as well as to the increase in the age at which most couples marry, since many now choose to wait before committing to a relationship long-term.

For over 20 years, the Chicago divorce attorneys at Nottage and Ward have helped clients through the complex divorce process in Illinois. We can help you reach a solution that best suits your needs. To learn how we can help protect your legal rights during your divorce, call 610-645-0100 today.

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