May 25, 2021
COVID-19 Pandemic Causing Uncertainty in Divorce Rates
The current trend in divorce rates is downward as the uncertainty of the pandemic and financial concerns force couples to stay together. After the initial shutdowns forced families to isolate and quarantine, law firms, fortunate enough to be able to meet with clients, saw an increase in divorce filings. Separating couples, unwilling to face the idea of increased time with the other party, initially drove the pandemic divorce rate upward. However, the current divorce rate appears to be decreasing for a variety of reasons.
Splitting couples faced with the prospect of spending more time with their significant other, when the pandemic struck, caused divorce rates to rise in those early days. Couples already facing financial stress, ongoing affairs, and boredom were desperate for help with a separation from each other. Although they might have been able to avoid each other pre-Covid, the virus caused many couples to spend more time together. This created an increased necessity to end the relationship. Therefore, the pandemic initially caused a rise in the divorce rate.
Reversal in the Trend
Surprisingly, as the pandemic continued to endure, divorce rates began to slow. Couples seemed to use the added time together as a family to heal wounds and renew broken relationships. Instead of looking outward for a distraction, such as the office affair, families learned to spend time together without outside influences. Combined with other fears, like the high cost of divorce, couples, at least at the current time, have decided to give their relationship one more try.
Uncertainty for the Future
Nevertheless, broken relationships still remain and with the weather warming and the vaccine being doled out, one would expect another uptick in divorce rates. Once family courts are able to get back on schedule and face to face meetings increase, it would seem logical for hidden relationship problems to emerge. Couples, who buried their issues during the pandemic, probably did not fix them and thus they still remain. This could cause the divorce rate to change course once again.