Why Do Divorce Rates Spike in January?

You may have heard that January is one of the most popular months of the year to get a divorce. Nicknamed “divorce month” in legal circles, the first month of the year sees approximately 33 percent more divorce filings than average, with filings continuing to be high through February and into March. The rush typically begins the first full working week after Christmas, with the Monday after the kids go back to school as another particularly busy day. What are the reasons for this trend? There are several, and many of them have to do with the timing of the holidays.

Why Wait Until January?

The following are reasons why people typically wait until January to file for divorce:

  • Saturated stress levels during the holidays can magnify marital problems already existing in a marriage. With “resolution month” just around the corner, many people who feel they have been pushed to their breaking points during the holidays may wish to start the New Year fresh by seeking a divorce.
  • Couples with children are often reluctant to break up their families before the holidays, and feel that they owe it to their families to have one more holiday together before filing.
  • Because of the holidays, court dates during the last month of the year are in much shorter supply. Instead of filing for divorce at the end of the year and possibly not being able to get a court date, many couples choose to wait until after the holidays are over.
  • Sometimes, couples choose to wait to file until the New Year for tax purposes. Couples who divorce at the beginning of the year can still file taxes jointly for that year, which can benefit couples financially.

It is also interesting to note that the first few months of the year also see a spike in online dating. According to Zoosk, a popular dating app, registrations jump by more than 25 percent beginning the two weeks after Christmas. Match.com reports a similar growth trend, with a 40 percent increase in sign-ups from December through February.

Of course, divorce is a highly personal decision, and everyone has their own reasons for timing. If you are seeking a divorce lawyer in New Jersey, now is the time to contact Moskowitz Law Group, LLC. A New Jersey divorce attorney at our firm would be happy to discuss your case with you and offer you the sound legal advice you need to make an informed decision. With more than 50 years of combined legal experience, you can be confident in our ability to handle your case with all of the professionalism and dedication it deserves.

Speak to an attorney today at (201) 419-6223.

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