Posted by Patrick Hart, Partner
On 1 September 2016 Withy King LLP merged with Royds LLP. The trading name for the merged firm is Royds Withy King. All content produced prior to this date will remain in the name of the firms pre-merger.
Resolution reacts to latest divorce stats
A slight drop in the number of people getting a divorce might be the result of fewer people getting married in the first place, experts have suggested.
Resolution, a leading family law association, believes that the increasing number of couples choosing to cohabit could be responsible for the new trend.
The latest batch of figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that in 2013 there were 114,720 divorces in England and Wales.
This was a drop of almost three per cent on the previous 12 months, when 118,140 couples were granted a decree absolute.
Jo Edwards, chair of Resolution, said: “The rise in cohabiting couples…may play a role. Cohabitation separation is not included in these statistics.
“Whatever the reason, there are still many thousands of British families who are experiencing family breakdown next year, whether that’s divorce or separation.”
Overall the number of people seeking divorce has been gradually declining since 2004 (although the financial crash was believed to have contributed to a slight spike five years ago.)
The latest figures coincide with a separate study, co-ordinated by Resolution, which has assessed the impact of divorce proceedings on young people.
A poll of 14 to 22-year-olds who have experience of parental separation suggests that as many as eight out of ten would prefer their parents to split up if the relationship has become unhappy.
“This new information shows that, despite the common myth that it’s better to stay together ‘for the sake of the kids’, most children would sooner have their parents’ divorce rather than remain in an unhappy relationship,” added Ms Edwards.
“Being exposed to conflict and uncertainty about the future are what’s most damaging for children, not the fact of divorce itself.”