Top Causes of Divorce

Divorce Causes

An annual study in the UK by management consultants Grant Thornton estimates the main causes of divorce based on surveys of matrimonial lawyers. The main causes in 2004 (2003) were:

  • * Extramarital affairs - 27% (29%)
  • * Family strains - 18% (11%)
  • * Emotional/physical abuse - 17% (10%)
  • * Mid-life crisis - 13% (not in 2003 survey)
  • * Addictions, e.g. alcoholism and gambling - 6% (5%)
  • * Workaholism - 6% (5%)

According to this survey, men engaged in extra-marital affairs in 75% (55%) of cases; women in 25% (45%). In cases of family strain, women's families were the primary source of strain in 78%, compared to 22% of men's families.

Emotional and physical abuse were more evenly split, with women affected in 60% and men in 40% of cases. In 70% of workaholism-related divorces it was men who were the cause, and 30% women.

The 2004 survey found that 93% of divorce cases were petitioned by women, very few of which were contested.

53% of divorces were of marriages that had lasted 10 to 15 years, with 40% ending after 5 to 10 years. The first 5 years are relatively divorce-free, and if a marriage survives more than 20 years it is unlikely to end in divorce.

Regarding divorce settlements, as defined by this survey women obtained a better or considerably better settlement than men in 60% of cases. In 30% of cases the assets were split 50-50, and in only 10% of cases did men achieve better settlements (down from 24% the previous year). The 2004 report concluded that campaigns like that of Fathers 4 Justice must succeed in increasing the percentage of shared residence orders, in order for more equitable financial divisions to become the norm.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Divorce".  

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