Year in Review: Top 4 Marriage and Divorce Trends in 2015
As 2015 draws to a close, we’re taking a moment to look back at Divorce trends in 2015! From a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision to the emergence of a new, pro-divorce hashtag, 2015 had plenty to offer for those who have a professional or personal interest in the latest happenings in family law.
U.S. Supreme Court Paves the Way for Same-Sex Marriage Nationwide
On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled by a vote of 5-4 that same-sex couples have the right to marry under the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. Even in states like California where same-sex marriage was already legal, the Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges represents a watershed moment for married and unmarried gay and lesbian couples, who still faced certain limitations on their legal rights.
As a result of Obergefell v. Hodges, same-sex couples who tie the knot in California can now have their marriages recognized in all 50 states. They are also now entitled to equal benefits from out-of-state employers. News outlets reported that courthouses across the country began issuing marriage licenses same-sex couples within hours of the Court’s decision (with certain notable exceptions), so it will be interesting to see how same-sex marriage and divorce rates evolve during 2015 and beyond.
Couples Who Marry in their Late 20s and Early 30s Now Have Lowest Risk of Divorce
A new study of divorce rates published in 2015 found that couples who get married between the ages of 25 and 34 now have the lowest risk of divorce. The findings challenge the historical notion that couples who get married later in life are the least likely to get divorced, and indicate that while divorce rates among those who get married between 25 and 24 have been declining, rates among those who get married at age 35 or older are on the rise.
According to the researchers behind the study, the data suggest that the 25-to-34 age range is currently a “Goldilocks” zone for building a stable marriage.
California Law Change May Lead to More Separations Prior to Divorce
A July 2015 decision by the California Supreme Court may cause more spouses to choose to move out prior to getting divorced. Under California’s community property law, any assets that either spouse acquires prior to separation (with some exceptions) will be subject to division during their divorce. The California Supreme Court’s ruling specifies that “separation” requires physically living under separate roofs. Will more spouses choose to leave home in order to protect newly-acquired assets? Only time will tell.
Importantly, there are reasons to consider not moving out prior to getting divorced as well. You should always speak with an attorney before making any decisions that could affect your rights in your divorce.
Another development we saw in 2015 was the rise of couples posting happy pictures of themselves online after finalizing their divorces. Accompanied by the #divorceselfie hashtag, these photos are said not to celebrate divorce, but rather the couples’ successful completion of a non-adversarial separation process.
As stated by one individual who found the process to be much less expensive and emotionally taxing than she had anticipated, “If people are going to see the picture and think, ‘Oh, maybe I don’t have to hate my ex-husband,’ I think that’s just for the better.”
Law Office of Renkin & Associates | Certified Family Law Specialist in San Diego, CA
At the Law Office of Renkin & Associates, we provide thoughtful and experienced legal representation for San Diego-area residents in family-related legal matters. If you have questions about your legal rights or are considering filing for divorce, please contact us for an initial consultation.
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