Divorce cases are up as economy recovers

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ABC News

Posted: 02/05/2014                           
                                        
Carlos Correa

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - A rebound in the economy is producing a rebound in divorce court. Now that the economy is starting to improve, it appears more people are deciding that it’s a good time to call it quits.

Couples forced to stay together during the recession are finally able to permanently separate as the improving economy brings in more available money.

Bakersfield attorney Nicholas Azemika is noticing a change just as the economy begins to recover.
“In Kern County, typically family law, there’s always an increase in filings,” he said.

A study to be published in Population Research and Policy Reviews, finds fewer couples nationwide split during the recession and may have been waiting until they could afford to file for divorce.

“When the real estate market went crazy, and you had people with equity in their homes, all of a sudden you started seeing spouses coming in saying ‘oh, okay if I get divorced, I get half of that equity in that house? Yup,’” he said.

Nationwide, the divorce rate among married women dropped from 2.09% to 1.95%, but began to climb in both 2010 and 2011.

Leaders with Kern County’s Family and Law Division are also noticing the trend here at home.
“People in marriage fight over sex, power and money,” said Azemika.

Five thousand people filed for divorce last year, that’s a little over four hundred a month.
“There’s a lot of reasons why they go through divorce, but the biggest reason is financial stress,” said Garro Ellis, financial advisor for Money Wise.

Filing for divorce can cost $500 dollars and after lawyer and court costs, it all adds up to more than $10,000, which for some couples it’s a split they can now afford.

“Now that the economy is recovering, people are more comfortable with stock prices up, 401k’s are up, home prices are up. They are feeling more comfortable pulling the trigger,” said Ellis.

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Child Sense: Helping your child feel secure during divorce

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By PRISCILLA DUNSTAN

ChildSense.com
Divorce is a very hard subject to talk about with your children, especially as it usually is the accumulation of a period of unpleasant interactions between parents. It's important that you help your child transition as easily as possible and know that even though there may be a change in living environments it need not be the end of their relationship with either parent. By being aware of your child's dominant sense during this period, you can help them assimilate the information in a positive way and help them to feel secure, safe and loved.

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2014/02/03/4794653/child-sense-helping-your-child.html#storylink=cpy

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Effect of Social Media on a Divorce

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The Paramus Post

By Angela Sanders Wednesday, January 29, 2014, 12:14 AM EST
      
In years past most marital fights and indiscretions occurred behind closed doors, and after the fact there was no record of what had transpired. Today, with the increase of technology, things we say on cell phones, online, and even in the presence of cameras can be stored indefinitely and used against us years later. While advanced technology, including social media, has had a profound impact on nearly every aspect of our lives, it seems to be creating particular problems in the area of marriage and divorce.

Impact of Social Media on Marriages
Ten years ago if a person wanted to hook up with an old flame or start a casual romance they almost always had to physically leave their home to do it. The effort involved in straying from one's partner was much greater than it is today. With the click of a mouse, a disgruntled marriage partner can find another individual to connect to within minutes. Some people think connections made online are not technically cheating. Even for those who take this view, it's still unfortunate that many times online connections turn into physical affairs. By some estimates divorce has increased up to 20 percent during the previous 10 years because of social media.
 

More religiously conservative Protestants? More divorce, study finds

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From the LA Times



Divorce is higher among religiously conservative Protestants – and even drives up divorce rates for other people living around them, a new study finds.

The study, slated to be published in the American Journal of Sociology, tackles the “puzzling paradox” of why divorce is more common in religiously conservative “red” states. If religious conservatives believe firmly in the value of marriage, why is divorce especially high in places like Alabama and Arkansas?

To figure that out, researchers from the University of Texas and the University of Iowa analyzed county divorce statistics against information from an earlier study of religious congregations. They categorized Protestant denominations that believe the Bible is literally true as "conservative Protestants."

Researchers discovered that higher divorce rates among conservative Protestants were tied to earlier marriages and childbearing – factors known to ramp up divorce. Starting families earlier tends to stop young adults from pursuing more education and depresses their wages, putting more strain on marriages, University of Texas at Austin professor Jennifer Glass said.
But the study went a step further: Glass and another researcher also discovered that people living in areas with lots of conservative Protestants were at higher risk of getting divorced, even if they weren’t conservative Protestants themselves.

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Joe Sorge's documentary, "Divorce Corp." examines the disfunctional nature of America's family court system.

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From the Hollywood Reporter: 1/9/14

See the film review for Divorce Corp.

Is January National Divorce Month?

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HuffPost
By

January is upon us and the phones are starting to ring. It happens every year in our divorce law practice. It's the same old story: clients dissatisfied with the marital relationships, but not wanting to file for divorce until after the holidays.

Since I began my divorce law practice decades ago, it has never changed. It is like a department store having a sale. People are lining up on the phone to speak with an attorney and make an appointment to get started.

I am not totally sure what it is all about. We don't keep the statistics in our office, but I read somewhere that most of the people calling are women. Did the husband not pay attention to the hints dropped about that perfect Christmas present? I am sure that it is much more than that. Did he get caught kissing the wrong person under the mistletoe?

A friend of mine told me once that the reason men have affairs is that they have just come to realize that they are going to die someday. It is sort of an analysis of what you want the rest of your life to look like. If it looks better with another female in the picture, then the move gets made because the man doesn't want to end his life with having let the opportunity slip by.
People take time during the holidays to pause and reflect. They take more days off work around the holidays and they exchange thoughts with friends. This can lead to that lifestyle analysis.

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Divorce without judges? France mulls new plan

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PARIS: France is considering a plan to allow divorces by mutual consent to proceed without a judge, simplifying a process that some critics say is already too easy. Social Affairs Minister Dominique Bertinotti confirmed the plan was under consideration on Friday, telling BFM-TV that “simplification is a good thing.”

Under the report requested by France’s justice minister and expected to be laid out in mid-January, a court clerk could approve divorces when both spouses agree.

According to the Le Figaro newspaper, divorcing couples in agreement spend an average of only eight minutes before a judge now. The paper said 54 percent of French divorces are uncontested.

Bertinotti said court clerks are highly trained in the law and could handle those cases, freeing up judges for trickier breakups.

“One couple in two will divorce. Do we have to make it more difficult?” she asked.

Opponents say the proposal will further weaken the institution of marriage, as well as make agreements harder to enforce.

“Doing without a judge’s authority risks weakening the agreement and reinforces the sentiment — common about those divorcing — that they’ve been had,” Elodie Mulon, a specialist in family law, told Le Figaro. Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, the government spokeswoman, said the proposal was among about 200 in the report.

AP

Source Article: The Peninsular