U.S.A Divorce Rate
- The marriage rate in the US was 6.1 per 1,000 total population in 2019. (Latest data available here)
- In the same year, the crude divorce rate in the US was 2.7 per 1,000 population (reported by 44 states and D.C.). However, this rate does not accurately reflect the percentage of first marriages that end in divorce.
- Both marriage and divorce rates in the US have been decreasing since 2000. The marriage rate dropped from 8.2 per 1,000 people in 2000 to 6.1 in 2019, while the divorce rate decreased from 4.0 in 2000 to 2.7 in 2019. Recent studies suggest that millennials waiting longer to get married and staying married longer are the main driver behind this trend.
U.S.A. Divorce Rate Per 1000 Married Women
- The divorce rate per 1000 married women in the US is currently 16.9, which many experts believe is a more accurate measure of the true divorce rate than the crude rate.
- The divorce rate per 1000 married women is almost double that of 1960 but down from the all-time high of 22.6 in the early 1980s.
- Approximately 50% of all marriages in the US will end in divorce or separation.
- Researchers estimate that 41% of all first marriages in the US end in divorce.
- 60% of second marriages in the US end in divorce.
- 73% of all third marriages in the US end in divorce.
- The United States has the 6th highest divorce rate in the world. Here is a chart of the top twenty:
Countries With The Highest Divorce Rates In The World: Top 20
How Often Divorce Takes Place In The USA
(This data was re-evaluated using the recently published divorce statistics by the CDC for the year 2019. However, the actual numbers are probably greater, given that the report only comprises data from 44 states that provided the information.)
- In the United States, there is one divorce every 42 seconds, which amounts to 86 divorces per hour, 2,046 per day, 14,364 per week, and 746,971 per year. This number is based on the latest divorce figures from the CDC for 2019, which only includes data from 44 reporting states. The actual number is likely higher.
- In the US, there is a marriage every 16 seconds, which is equivalent to 230 marriages per hour, 38,762 marriages per week, and 2,015,603 marriages per year.
- Nearly three divorces occur within the two-minute period it takes for a couple to recite their wedding vows.
- More than 172 divorces happen during the average length of a romantic comedy movie, which is typically two hours.
- An average of 430 divorces occur during the duration of an average wedding reception, which is usually five hours.
- The average first marriage in the US, which ends in divorce, lasts for about eight years, resulting in 5,975,768 divorces.
- Over a 40-year period, 67% of first marriages end in divorce.
- 25% of all Americans over 18 years of age, whether they have been married or not, have gone through a marital split.
- Today, 15% of adult women in the US are divorced or separated, compared to less than 1% in 1920.
- The median duration of first marriages that end in divorce is 7.8 years for males and 7.9 years for females. The median duration of second marriages is 7.3 years for males and 6.8 years for females.
- On average, people wait three years after a divorce to remarry, assuming they decide to remarry at all.
- In 2011, only 29 out of every 1,000 divorced or widowed women remarried.
Who Is Getting Divorced?
- The average age for couples going through their first divorce is 30 years old.
- Individuals aged 25 to 39 make up 60% of all divorces.
- On average, wives file for divorce 66% of the time. In some years, this figure has risen to almost 75%.
- The professions with the highest divorce rates include dancers, bartenders, massage therapists, gaming cage workers, and gaming service workers.
- The professions with the lowest divorce rates include agricultural engineers, optometrists, clergy, podiatrists, and farmers.
- Downscale adults, Baby Boomers, those aligned with a non-Christian faith, African Americans, and individuals who consider themselves liberal on social and political matters have the highest rates of marriage ending in divorce (ranging from 36% to 39%).
- Catholics, evangelicals, upscale adults, Asians, and individuals who consider themselves conservative on social and political matters have the lowest rates of marriage ending in divorce (ranging from 20% to 28%).
- According to the Pentagon, the military divorce rate in the 2013 fiscal year was 3.4%. However, the rate was significantly higher for military women at 7.2%.
- The divorce rate among enlisted troops was 3.8%. Among officers, the divorce rate was 1.9%.
- The Air Force has the highest divorce rate among enlisted troops of any military branch at 4.3%.
- The divorce rate among US Navy SEALs is over 90%.
Divorce Rate in Specific Population Segments
- The divorce rate among people aged 50 and older has doubled in the past 20 years.
- Research conducted by Bowling Green State University has shown that the divorce rate among individuals aged 50 and above has doubled in the last 20 years.
Same Sex Divorce Statistics
- When it comes to same-sex divorce statistics, research shows that around 1% of married same-sex couples get divorced each year, while approximately 2% of married straight couples divorce.
- Data from the UK’s Office of National Statistics indicates that lesbian couples are almost twice as likely to terminate their marriage or civil union than gay male couples.
- In the US, the divorce rate is 3.1 per 1000 people in states that allow same-sex marriage and 3.9 in states that prohibit it.
When Do People Divorce?
- The average length of a marriage that ends in divorce is 8 years.
- January is known as “divorce month” because it is the time when people start looking for information before the New Year but cannot file for divorce until attorneys return to the office. The week of January 12-16 is considered the prime time for filings.
Why People Are Divorcing In The United States Of America?
- The most common reason given for divorce is a lack of commitment, according to a recent national survey. Other reasons include frequent arguments, infidelity, getting married too young, having unrealistic expectations, a lack of equality in the relationship, and inadequate preparation for marriage.
What Makes People More Or Less Likely To Divorce?
- Individuals who marry before the age of 18 are 48% more likely to divorce within 10 years compared to those who marry after the age of 25.
- 60% of couples who marry between the ages of 20-25 will eventually divorce.
- Those who wait until they are over 25 years old to marry are 24% less likely to divorce.
If You Or Your Partner Have Been Married Before
- If both partners have had previous marriages, they are 90% more likely to get divorced than if it was the first marriage for both individuals.
Religion And Divorce
- Individuals with strong religious beliefs are 14% less likely to divorce, while those with no religious affiliation are 14% more likely to divorce.
- Evangelical Christian adults who have been married have a 26% likelihood of divorce compared to 28% for Catholics and 38% for non-Christians.
- Studies have shown that the concentration of conservative or evangelical Protestants in a county is one of the strongest factors predicting divorce rates.
Education And Intelligence
- High school dropouts are 13% more likely to get divorced, while individuals who have attended college have a 13% lower risk of divorce.
- Individuals with below-average IQs are 50% more likely to be divorced than those with above-average IQs.
- Conservatives are the least likely to be divorced (28%), followed by moderates (33%) and liberals (37%).
- If you live in a Republican state, you are 27% more likely to get divorced than if you live in a Democratic state.
Cohabitation – If You Lived With Your Partner Before You Got Married
- Cohabiting couples are 40% more likely to get divorced, and women who have lived with more than one partner before their first marriage are 40% more likely to get divorced than those who have not.
Where You Met
- Individuals who met their spouses in high school, college, or grad school are 41% less likely to get divorced.
- The other major difference was couples who met in bars were 24 percent more likely to get divorced than expected.
Your Sexual History
- Women who wait until age 18 or older to lose their virginity are less likely to get divorced in the first 5 years of marriage compared to those who lost their virginity as a teenager, according to research.
- A study conducted at the University of Iowa in 2011 found that both men and women who lost their virginity before age 18 had a higher probability of divorce within the first 10 years of marriage.
- Girls who began sexual activity at ages 13 or 14 were less likely to have stable marriages in their 30s compared to those who started in their early 20s, according to a study.
The Harmful Effects Of Early Sexual Activity And Multiple Sexual Partners Among Women
- Women who had six or more premarital sexual partners were almost three times less likely to be in a stable marriage.
Where You Live Impacts Your Likelihood To Be Divorced
- The likelihood of divorce varies by location. According to the CDC, the states with the highest divorce rates are Nevada, West Virginia, Arkansas, Idaho, and Oklahoma, while the states with the lowest divorce rates are Iowa, Illinois, Massachusetts, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania.
- Arkansas has the highest rate of individuals married 3 or more times, with men and women in the state being twice as likely to have been married 3 or more times compared to the national average.
Your Habits, Your Marriage
- The risk of divorce can be influenced by habits within the marriage. For example, research shows that the risk of divorce is higher when the mother works outside the home and the father contributes minimally to housework and childcare.
- Facebook was cited as a factor in one-third of divorce cases examined in a UK study conducted in 2011.
- According to a study by the University of Rochester, watching romantic movies and discussing them with one’s spouse can lower the divorce rate from 24 to 11 percent in marriages of three years.
- Pornography addiction was cited as a factor in 56 percent of divorces in a recent study.
Your Parent’s Relationship
- Research suggests that children of happily married parents are less likely to divorce, with the risk decreasing by 14 percent.
- However, if parents divorce and remarry, their children are 91 percent more likely to get divorced in their own marriages.
- Studies conducted by Nicholas Wolfinger in “Understanding the Divorce Cycle” reveal that when one spouse comes from a divorced home, the risk of divorce increases by 50 percent, and when both partners come from such a background, the risk increases by 200 percent.
- Furthermore, children of divorce are 50 percent more likely to marry someone who also comes from a divorced family.
- The likelihood of divorce varies for daughters and sons of divorced parents, with daughters having a 60 percent higher divorce rate than children of non-divorced parents and sons having a 35 percent higher rate.
If You Have Kids Or Not
- Couples with children have a lower divorce rate, up to 40 percent less than those without children.
- Shockingly, half of all children in the United States witness their parents’ marriage ending.
- Of these children, nearly half will also see the end of a second marriage for one of their parents.
- Couples with twins or triplets have a 17 percent higher likelihood of divorce than those with only one child.
- Interestingly, having a daughter increases the risk of divorce by almost 5 percent compared to having a son.
- When a family has three daughters, that risk increases to 10 percent.
- Fathers are less likely to live with their children if they have daughters instead of sons, with a difference of 3 percent.
- Finally, having a baby before marriage increases the risk of divorce by 24 percent.
Your Finances And Their Effect On Divorce Rates
- An annual income of over $50,000 can decrease the risk of divorce by as much as 30 percent compared to those with an income of under $25,000.
- Arguing about finances at least once a week can increase the likelihood of divorce by 30 percent, and couples with no assets at the beginning of a three-year period are 70 percent more likely to divorce by the end of that period compared to those with $10,000 in assets.
- Feeling that one’s spouse spends money foolishly can increase the likelihood of divorce by 45 percent for both men and women.
Addiction, Mental Illness And Divorce
- A couple with only one smoker is 76-95 percent more likely to get divorced, with the risk increasing if the wife is the smoker.
- Couples who both smoke are still 53 percent more likely to get divorced than non-smoking couples, according to a 1998 study.
- Each liter of alcohol consumed increases the likelihood of divorce by 20 percent. The average American drinks 9.4 liters of alcohol per year, raising their divorce risk by 188 percent.
- Couples with similar heavy drinking patterns are more likely to stay together, according to a 9-year study.
- Couples with one heavy drinker and one non-drinker are 60 percent more likely to get divorced.
- A 2011 multinational study found that 18 mental disorders increased the likelihood of divorce, with addiction and major depression having the highest impact.
- Video game addiction was cited as a major factor in nearly 15 percent of divorce petitions in a recent study.
Divorce, Child Support And Child Custody
- 43 percent of children in the United States are raised without their fathers.
- When parents are happily married, their children have a 14 percent lower risk of divorce.
- 90 percent of divorced mothers have custody of their children.
- Custodial mothers receive a child support award over 79 percent of the time, while custodial fathers receive one just under 30 percent of the time.
- 65 percent of divorced mothers do not receive child support.
- Non-custodial mothers default on child support payments over 46 percent of the time, compared to non-custodial fathers at 27 percent.
Friend’s And Relative’s Impact On Divorce
- If a close friend gets divorced, the likelihood of divorce increases by 147 percent, and by 33 percent if a friend of a friend is divorced.
- According to research conducted by the University of California and Brown University, working with someone who is going through a divorce can increase a married person’s risk of divorce by 75%.
- People with divorced siblings are 22 percent more likely to get divorced than those without.
- In a Canadian survey, 19 percent of men reported a significant decrease in social support after divorce.
The Financial Effects Of Divorce
- The average cost of divorce in the United States is $15,000.
- Families with children that were not poor before the divorce see their income drop as much as 50 percent.
- Almost 50 percent of parents with children going through a divorce fall into poverty after the divorce.
- 27 percent of recently divorced women have less than $25,000 in annual household income, compared to 17 percent of recently divorced men.
- 60 percent of people under poverty guidelines are divorced women and children.
The Toll A Divorce Takes
- A study called “Divorce and Death” shows that divorce can lead to death at the same rate as smoking cigarettes, with a 23 percent higher risk of dying among divorced people.
- A single divorce costs state and federal governments about $30,000, according to one researcher, due to increased use of food stamps, public housing, bankruptcies, and juvenile delinquency.
- The estimated cost to taxpayers of the nation’s 1.4 million divorces in 2002 was over $30 billion.
- 38 percent of couples who seek marriage counseling end up divorced just two years later, according to the New York Times.
- Only five percent of divorces are decided in court, with 95 percent of cases settled amicably or through