Central PA Premier Family Law Firm
New Year, New Life

Why Divorce Rates Spike At The Beginning of Any New Year

It is not uncommon for people to refer to January as “divorce month.” Every January, like clockwork, there is a spike in internet searches and web traffic for terms related to custody, divorce, and family law. This is especially true for divorce matters with child custody involved. In fact, it is not only January but the first three months of the year that divorce filings are above average. Throughout our years of family law practice, we have found many reasons why this phenomenon occurs. By listening to our potential clients, we have learned why people choose to seek a divorce during the early months of a new year. As you may guess, most people decide to pursue a divorce after the December holiday season however, others choose January for reasons that may surprise you.

Children's Holiday Enjoyment

Some parents decide to delay seeking a divorce until the early months of the new year, often because they do not want to ruin their children’s holiday. Those parents make the conscious choice to continue in the marriage, knowing that they will pursue a divorce after the holidays for the children's sake. When the holiday season ends, and regular, everyday life resumes, people who were considering a divorce in the later months of the previous year begin to seek legal representation in the new year. Knowing they have assured their children's holidays were happy, they can now move towards a fresh start.

Holiday Stress Revelation

With the emotional nature of the holiday season, people often tell us that they attempted to give their troubled marriage one more try during the holidays, only to find themselves as unhappy as they were beforehand. With increased stress and commitments, the holiday season has a unique way of helping people conclude that their marriage should end. Once the problems in their marriage are brought to light during this time, many people seek help from a divorce attorney.

Time for A New Life

December's festivities are only one of many reasons that people seek a divorce in the new year. Our family law attorneys have found that the new year itself is the real driving force behind the rise in divorce rates. The start of a new year often brings clarity and tends to make people reexamine the reasoning that prevented them from seeking a divorce in the past. Similar to why gym memberships increase in January, the concept of new beginnings is a key reason for the higher new year divorce rates.. We find that people are prone to seek happiness in the new year, often by making resolutions to lose weight or learn new things. It is the same spirit that allows one to set aside their reservations, doubts, and fears in seeking a divorce. In our experience, the first few months of the year are when people begin the work of leaving the last year behind them and giving themselves the emotional freedom to make significant life changes.

Family Support

Family interactions during the holiday season are another reason that people seek divorce in the beginning of the new year. Even with COVID-19 restrictions and precautions, people found new ways to connect with their loved ones. These interactions are the perfect opportunity to connect with both loved ones you may see often and those with whom you were able to reconnect because of the season. It is even common for people contemplating divorce to ask family and friends outright for their opinion on the decision. Often, people seeking a divorce receive a not-so-surprising answer and also learn of others’ support of their decision. Their loved ones’ support often allows a person seeking divorce to take the necessary first steps. Building a support system with loved ones is vital in the success of a divorce. People need emotional support when facing the trauma that occurs with even the simplest of divorces. The peace that comes from knowing they have their loved ones’ support and assistance through the process makes it easier to seek a new life in the new year.

How We Can Help

If this article speaks to you and you would like a complimentary consultation with an attorney, please contact our law office today. A consultation can give you peace of mind by answering your questions and calming any fears. During your consultation, we will identify what is essential to you, listen to your story, and help you define the future that you feel is best for you.

If you are not ready to schedule a consultation but would like to learn more about a potential divorce, please download a copy of my free e-book, “A Roadmap To Your New Life.” This book contains both real client stories and straightforward answers to common questions.