Why do more couples divorce in January?

On Behalf of | Nov 27, 2023 | Blog, DIVORCE - Divorce |

The start of a new year often symbolizes fresh beginnings and a sense of renewal. January has also gained notoriety as a month marked by an increase in divorce filings.

While the reasons for marital dissolution are complex and varied, certain factors may influence the common decision to part ways at the beginning of the year.

A time for self-assessment

As the year comes to a close, individuals naturally engage in reflection and self-evaluation. Couples may also find themselves contemplating the status of their relationship. This process can uncover long-standing issues that prompt them to consider divorce as a resolution for the new year.

The symbolism of a new year and the opportunity for a fresh start can also influence couples’ decisions to file for divorce in January. Many view the beginning of the year as an auspicious time to embark on a new chapter in life, unencumbered by the challenges of the past.

Holiday-related strain

The holiday season, with its emphasis on togetherness and celebrations, can ironically contribute to heightened stress on relationships. Couples may experience amplified conflicts during this time, driving the decision to file for divorce.

Financial realities

Year-end financial assessments often reveal the economic realities of a marriage. The average American family spends about $1,455 during the holiday season. Couples may have to face the consequences of overspending and repay debts in the new year. These realizations can be a catalyst for divorce filings in January.

Family-related timing

Couples with children often delay divorce until after the holiday season. They aim to preserve a sense of normalcy and joy for their children during festive celebrations. Once the holidays conclude, parents may feel more inclined to initiate divorce proceedings.

Practical considerations

The start of the year allows couples the time to effectively negotiate a divorce agreement and plan their next steps. With a new year ahead, individuals may approach divorce with a sense of organization and readiness, addressing legal and practical considerations in a systematic manner.

The availability of services and resources in the new year supports the divorce process. As professionals return from holiday breaks, it becomes a convenient time to start the legal process.