Divorce Becoming More Common Among Middle-Aged
The age at which people typically seek advice from solicitors in Amersham about getting a divorce keeps rising, with more middle-aged couples likely to separate than before.
According to the latest findings from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), divorce rates in 2017 were at the lowest level since 1973, with just 8.4 divorces per 1,000 of opposite-sex couples. This is a decline of 5.6 per cent since 2016, as just 101,669 divorces of heterosexual marriages were granted last year.
However, the average age couples seek a legal separation is getting older, and in 2017, it was 46.4 years old for men and 43.9 years old for women. This is nine years older than the median age in 1985, showing that people are walking out of long-term relationships despite being together for many years.
Indeed, divorce rates last year were lower in every age group except for the over-60s. According to the figures, 9,831 men and 6,227 women over the age of 60 chose to legally separate in 2017.
Nicola Haines, from the vital statistics outputs branch for the ONS, said: “Among older people rates are actually higher in 2017 than in 1993 – perhaps due to the fact we have an increasingly ageing population and people are getting married later in life.”
Earlier this year, family judge Sir James Munby called for a reform to the law, saying couples should be able to divorce their partner simply if they have fallen out of love with them, instead of having to cite a reason, such as unreasonable behaviour or adultery.
If they cannot prove one of these reasons, their husband or wife can contest the divorce and make them remain in a loveless marriage, the Telegraph reported at the time.