You may have seen the headlines in the fall of 2020 about a surge in the divorce rate in response to coronavirus lockdowns, and the added stress families were experiencing because of the pandemic. It turns out, however, that there has not actually been an increase in divorce since the world was turned upside down in March of 2020—at least not yet.
Pandemic Divorce Is Understandable
Even the happiest couples have been put to the test during the pandemic. Closed schools, job loss, isolation from friends, losing family members, illness, and long periods of quarantine have created very stressful conditions for families. It seems logical that this would lead to an increase in separations and divorce. In fact, there was a surge in people researching divorce and downloading legal forms in the summer of 2020, which is what led to the headlines. However, it turns out that no more people actually followed through on filing for divorce than do in a normal year.
The Pandemic Has Made it Harder to Get Divorced
It’s too soon to know for sure what effect the pandemic will have on marriages in the U.S. It’s possible that we will see a surge in divorce in a year or two and that those splits will be a direct result of the pandemic. People may be delaying divorce for the following reasons:
- Cost. Getting divorced is expensive, and many couples, no matter how unhappy they may be, simply do not have the money to put towards a divorce due to job loss, medical bills, childcare costs, and other expenses. Once things stabilize in the coming year, we might see more couples talking to lawyers.
- Difficulty finding a new place to live. In addition to having a limited income, couples might not be able to separate because there are limited housing options. Real estate is in high demand in some areas, making it difficult to buy a house or rent an apartment.
- Other priorities. Homeschooling children, taking care of sick family members, grieving the loss of a loved one, looking for a job, and other stressful tasks take precedence over separating and filing for divorce.
When things are back to being closer to normal, it is possible there will be a rush to file divorce papers.
Call Nathan Law Offices Now
If you are contemplating divorce but don’t have the resources to go through with it right now, it could be helpful to talk to a divorce attorney in your area. There are steps you can take to prepare for the possibility of a divorce, and the more prepared you are, the better the outcome could be for you—even if it’s a year from now. In Marin County, contact Nathan Law Offices to learn more.